Video Clip: Sudex Undersown with Red Clover from Vegetable Farmers and their Innovative Cover Cropping Techniques

Organic Agriculture June 15, 2011 Print Friendly and PDF

Source:

Farmers and their Innovative Cover Cropping Techniques [DVD]. V. Grubinger. 2006. University of Vermont Extension. Available for purchase from: http://www.uvm.edu/vtvegandberry/Videos/covercropvideo.html(Verified 31 Dec 2008).

This is a Vegetable Farmers and their Innovative Cover Cropping Techniques video clip.

 

Featuring

Eileen Droescher, Ol'Turtle Farm. Easthampton, MA.

Audio Text

We’ve been experimenting with a combination of Sudex and red clover planted after a cash crop. The Sudex will winter kill and then the clover will come back through in the spring and remain through the next season.

This Sudex was put in after a cash crop in the middle of August. The seeding rate is 3 pounds of Sudex to 2 pounds of red clover per bed. Sudex gives us a lot of biomass and then the red clover gives us the nitrogen. And red clover is something that we can leave in throughout the next year, we do not have to till it down and put it into a crop that will winter kill, because a couple times of mowing and by the following spring, there’s not so much left it goes down very easily.

After the Sudex has winter killed, this is what the field will look like, the Sudex was left in place, the red clover has been mowed four times through the season. It will be left here until spring when it will be spaded down and put into a cash crop. The timing of the planting of Sudex is very important. This Sudex was planted in the middle of August when it was still quite warm, this bed of Sudex was planted 2 weeks later when it had started to cool off so it’s obvious there’s going to be a substantial difference in the biomass created by the Sudex.

This section is an example of needing to respond to something that didn’t work correctly. It was seeded into Sudex and red clover last year, but this spring the red clover didn’t come through very well so in order to reduce our weed problem we spaded in the clover and planted it into straight Sudex at the end of May. We got a great stand of Sudex and this has been mowed three times, it has created a very good weed suppressive situation.

This video project was funded in part by the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (USDA).

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.