Plant Fall Farm Seed Now – excerpted from Johnny’s Seed
Late summer to early fall is the time to sow farm seed that will protect your soil over the winter, suppress cool-season weeds, and help conserve soil moisture – all while adding organic matter and improving soil fertility. They can be planted by broadcasting or drilling as soon as you remove summer crops from a field. You can read more about how to plant cover crops in this Growing for Market article.
Here are some good choices for fall and winter farm seed:
- Fall Green Manure Mix: Fixes nitrogen and is easy to incorporate in spring.
- Winter Rye: Grows quickly in fall and should be tilled in early in spring.
- Field Peas: Fast growing in cool fall weather, they will winterkill in most places, allowing for easy incorporation in spring.
- Clovers: Mammoth Red is the best for poor soils. Sweet Clover, once established, will have an extensive root system that improves soil fertility and tilth. New Zealand White can be used to underseed fall vegetables such as brassicas for a living mulch. Crimson Clover also can be used for underseeding, but will winterkill in northern climates.