Fast Planting For Cover Crop Success

Gerard Troisi speaking to Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association Members. (Photo by Simon Crouch)

An independent crop adviser from Pennsylvania believes the day of harvest is the best time to plant cover crops.

Gerard Troisi spoke at a series of Soil and Crop Improvement meetings in Ontario, telling the groups that following the combine with the planter means there is no time lost and no chance the cover crop will not get planted.

“If you get freezing weather or some snow, or a lot of rain then he’ll end up having no covers,” he says. “So if you continue to plant as you harvest then it really doesn’t matter what the weather is after the harvest is done.”

Troisi says in his area of Pennsylvania 80% of fields are cover cropped and all of his customers use a cover crop system.

He says the light hits the field every day and if cover crops are established quickly they can take advantage of that. He says building the soil cannot be replaced by additional fertilizer.

“There is actually very little of what we use as fertilizers in the produce,” he says. “The fertilizers act as a stimulant.”

Troisi likens fertilizers to coffee, which provide a boost, but can be overdone.