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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Madison, Wisconsin » U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center » Dairy Forage Research » Research » Research Project #431287

Research Project: Creating the Cover Crops that Organic Farmers Need: Delivering Regionally Adapted Varieties Across America

Location: Dairy Forage Research

Project Number: 5090-12210-001-11-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Nov 1, 2015
End Date: Aug 31, 2020

Objective:
Improve cover crop legume performance through germplasm screening and management experiments and disseminate knowledge to farmers and agricultural professionals.

Approach:
a. Create a legume cover crop germplasm screening program that evaluates hairy vetch, crimson clover, red clover, and Austrian winter pea for select agronomic traits of interest across a latitudinal gradient; b. Build a network of farmers who will aid in variety selection through participatory germplasm screening; c. Identify select cover crop accessions for seed increases and future improvement; d. Contract with buying groups or germplasm curators to conduct cover crop seed growouts. e. Disseminate knowledge gained from on-farm and on-station cover crop germplasm screenings and management experiments and engage farmers and agricultural professionals through on-farm field days, regional workshops, webinars, and the eOrganic website. f. Establish the Eastern Cover Crop Council (ECC).