If you have been toying around with the idea of planting cover crops on your agricultural fields the Isanti Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) has a new program that may be of interest to you.

The SWCD is excited to announce their new Cover Crop Demonstration program funded by a grant from Cargill and The Nature Conservancy.

Cover crops can be planted in fields after harvest or into the standing crop. The benefits include erosion control, improved soil fertility and weed suppression. Moreover, they are beneficial for society; they provide a return on investment over the long term—improved soil health means future generations will have success growing crops on the land.

The program pays $40/acre for multi-species cover crops and $30/acre for single species cover crops. The cover crops must be planted on the same field for three consecutive seasons. Throughout the length of the program the SWCD will collect and analyze soil samples, measure infiltration rates and burry cotton to test changes in soil biology.

They understand that there are hurdles to planting cover crops in the county such as a short growing season and lack of proper equipment to seed. This program intends to help find ways to overcome these hurdles.

“Dave Medvecky, has been planting cover crops on most of his fields for several years and has now decided to plant the remainder of his fields under this program. He is excited to be a part of this effort because he wants to show others that cover crops can be successfully planted into a corn- soybean rotation.” said Tiffany Determan, District Manager at the SWCD. “We plan to use Dave’s experience and knowledge to help others do the same. Moreover, we are excited to gather data to scientifically show the benefits of cover crops.”

Applicants will be considered now through late summer 2021. For more information visit www.isantiswcd.org or call Matthew Remer, SWCD Technician, at 763-689-3271.

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