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Cover Crops

Before integrating cover crops into your cropping system, it pays to do your homework. These resources provide tools and advice for those interested in using covers.


An Introduction to Integrating Cover Crops Into a Corn-Soybean Rotation

Authors: Eileen Kladivko, Robert Nielsen, Shaun Casteel, Keith Johnson, and James Camberato, Purdue Department of Agronomy; Christian Krupke, Purdue Department of Entomology; William Johnson, Bryan Young, and Kiersten Wise, Purdue Department of Botany & Plant Pathology

Agronomy Technical Notes
Recommended Cover Crop Seeding Methods and Tools

Published in February 2012 by USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Midwest Cover Crops Council
The Midwest Cover Crops Council (MCCC) is a consortium of land-grant universities, conservation agencies, USDA researchers, extension staff, crop advisers, seed companies, farmers, and NGOs. Their goal is to facilitate the widespread adoption of cover
crops across the Midwest for their benefits to water quality and agricultural sustainability.  The MCCC website includes cover crops selector tools that allow you to choose your county and get seeding dates for each cover crop. There is a tool for agronomic
crops for many states, plus for a tool for vegetable crops for Michigan. You can also get seeding rates by reading the information sheet about your cover crop of choice.  The website includes a wealth of other information about cover crops from around the Midwest.

Indiana Conservation Cropping Systems Initiative (CCSI)
The CCSI is an initiative within the Indiana Conservation Partnership. The website contains information and links for more details about cover crops, no-till, and other conservation cropping systems practices. 


Midwest Cover Crops Field Guide
Available from the Purdue Extension Education Store,
This pocket guide (Purdue Extension publication ID-433) was produced by the MCCC and the Purdue Crop Diagnostic Training and Research Center. The guide contains more detailed information about selecting and managing cover crops and describes common
cover crops for our region. The descriptions also include ranges of cover crop seeding rates. The insect section includes specific information about scouting for both pests and beneficials.


Terminating Cover Crops: Successful Cover Crop Termination with Herbicides
Available from the Purdue Extension Education Store,
As the title suggests, this publication (Purdue Extension publication WS-50-W) describes how producers can effectively terminate cover crops with herbicides to prevent them from becoming weeds in the cash crop. 


Herbicide Carryover Table

Available from Penn State University Extension,
Although published by Penn State, this table includes information that would fit Indiana.


Agronomy Technical Note: Recommended Cover Crop Seeding Methods and Tools
Available from the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service,
This excellent publication describes cover crop seeding methods that can be used in Indiana and similar Midwest states.


Managing Cover Crops Profitably, second edition
Available the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Learning Center,
This 244-page manual is part of a USDA-CSREES program.


Managing Cover Crops: Cover Crops for Modern Cropping Systems
Available from the Purdue Extension Education Store,
This publication (Purdue Extension publication AY-352-W) describes the benefits and considerations of using cover crops in today’s agricultural rotations.

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