Recent research by the Illinois Nutrient Research and Education Council shows planting cover crops ahead of soybeans can help maintain yields
During a visit to Eric Miller’s Piatt County, Ill., farm this past summer, a visitor from Argentina mentioned they refer to cover crops as “service crops.” Now, it’s Miller’s new favorite phrase.
“They provide all kinds of services. We’ve documented significant and consistent nitrate reductions in tile water. That’s our main focus,” says Miller, an active cover crop user since 2011, and a farmer-cooperator assisting with field-scale nutrient loss research projects since 2015. “But additional benefits observed include weed control, erosion control, increased organic material and improved water infiltration.”
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