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Tuesday, February 7 • 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Poster Display. Utilizing Diverse Cover Crop Mixes in the Establishment of Native Warm Season Grasses

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AUTHORS: Chris A. McLeland, Dave J. Niebruegge, Kendall L. Coleman - Missouri Department of Conservation

ABSTRACT: The utilization and incorporation of diverse cover crop mixes into crop rotations as a means to improve soil health, continues to gain popularity across the United States. Many state and federal agencies continue to promote the use of cover crops, and have allocated millions of dollars in cost share assistance to help producer incorporate this practice. In the Midwest, cover crops have proven to be a reliable forage source for cattle. In Missouri, the state fish and wildlife agency along-side partner agencies such as Quail Forever and the NRCS continue to promote the use of native grasses and forbs as part of cattle grazing operations. Research shows multiple benefits both for producer and wildlife when native grasses are utilized with rotational grazing. While it is well known that native grasses and forbs will provide an excellent source of forage and habitat, many producers find it extremely difficult to defer acres from all grazing or haying activities while native grasses and forbs are establishing. This has proven to be a large hurdle in terms of restoring native grasslands across Missouri. Beginning in 2013, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) along with other partner agencies began looking at this issue, in hopes of finding a solution that could potentially reduce the deferment time necessary to establish native grasses and forb, thereby making the practice more appealing. Research trails began utilization diverse cover crop mixes in conjunction with native grass and forb establishment. Cover crop mixes would be considered a nurse crop and would allow the producer to utilize these acres for forage while the native grasses where establishing. It is believed that this method of utilizing diver cover crop mixes in conjunction with native grass and forb establishment may enable many more producers to consider restoring native grassland acres on their operations.

Tuesday February 7, 2017 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Lancaster Ballroom

Attendees (1)