2018 Cover Crop Field Walks scheduled throughout Michigan

The first field walk on April 20 in Midland will focus on cover crop termination.

The Michigan State University Extension cover crops team will be hosting a series of informational Cover Crop Field Walks in 2018 looking at different cover crop species and how they work in different cropping systems. This is an opportunity for producers and agricultural professionals to visit cover crop field sites in various locations throughout Michigan with MSU Extension educators to observe and discuss cover crop use, management, benefits and challenges.

Most walks are scheduled on Thursdays from 5 – 7 p.m., with the exception of the first field walk of the season on April 20, which takes place from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. at Buechler Farms LLC, 1740 West River Rd, Midland, MI 48642. Lunch will be provided. Participants at this first field walk will see cover crops that were planted September 2017. There will be species that over-wintered and some that were winterkilled, providing an opportunity to discuss the pros and cons of each and how they might fit into a cropping system.

MSU Extension’s new Cover Crop Termination bulletin, published April 2018 by MSU Extension specialists Erin Hill and Christy Sprague, will be introduced. Developing a termination strategy is an essential part of any successful cover cropping system. The three termination methods—winter kill, mechanical methods and herbicides—will all be discussed with the examples in the plots.

Pre-registration is encouraged for the April 20 event at Buechler Farms. To register, contact MSU Extension educators Paul Gross at grossp@msu.edu or 989-317-4079, Christina Curell at curellc@anr.msu.edu or Dean Baas at baasdean@msu.anr.msu.

Join the MSU Extension cover crop team members and farmers at one or several Cover Crop Field Walks scheduled throughout the 2018 growing season (see the tentative schedule below). The field walks will be in-field opportunities group discussion and hands-on learning. As dates get closer, visit the MSU Extension Cover Crops page for location details.

Tentative schedule for 2018 Cover Crop Field Walks

  • April 20, 10 – 2 p.m., Bay County - 1740 West River Rd, Midland, MI 48642
  • April 26, 5 – 7 p.m., Kellogg Biological Station, 3700 E Gull Lake Dr, Hickory Corners, MI 49060
  • May 10, 5 – 7 p.m., Bear Lake, 3217 Schoedel Rd, Manistee, MI 49660
  • July 12, 5 – 7 p.m., Oceana County (vegetable focus)
  • July 26, 5 – 7 p.m., Clinton County (planting demo)
  • Aug. 9, 5 – 7 p.m., Kent County (fruit focus)
  • Aug. 23, 5 – 7 p.m., St. Joseph County
  • Sept. 6, 5 – 7 p.m., East Lansing Student Organic Farm
  • Sept. 20, 5 – 7 p.m., Lapeer County
  • Oct. 4, 5 – 7 p.m., Lenawee County
  • Oct. 18, 5 – 7 p.m., Isabella County

This work is supported by Project GREEEN and the Crop Protection and Pest Management Program 2017-70006-27175 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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