Varieties of Cereal Grains
There are a multitude of different cover crops and they all have their own use so we won’t cover that all here, but some here are a few suggestions when it comes to planting cereal grains and other cover crops. Rye is an excellent cover crop and does well when planted in the fall around late August into early October. This crop can be added to a fall clover planting to provide excellent weed suppression and feeding the deer at the same time. It also can be broadcasted into early maturing soybeans in late August or early September just as the leaves are starting to yellow. This will give you a field of green rye and beans making a hot spot come hunting season. Oats are a great spring cover crop and can be mixed with just about anything. They also can be planted in the fall but will be killed by the first frost here in IA. Other cover crops that can be utilized as soil builders and your deer will love, include peas, ground hog forage radish, and clovers. A common mixture Paul likes to plant is:
- Winter rye 50-80#’s per acre (56#’s = a bushel)
- Spring oats 80-120#’s per acre (32#’s = a bushel)
- Austrian Winter Peas or 4010/6040 Forage peas 20-80#’s per acre
- Red Clover 8-12#’s per acre or white clover at 6#’s per acre
- Groundhog Forage Radish 5#’s per acre
Nearly any mixture including the above plants will be great, for example, peas and rye, groundhog forage radish and rye, red clover and rye, or whatever you desire. With all these fall plantings you can also add oats but know that they will die off after a frost or two. Utilize cover crops to feed whitetails and don’t over look the huge benefits they bring to your soils.