General Comments:


Winter rye can be planted August-September for a late summer and over-winter cover.  Stem elongation will not occur without vernalization (cold temperatures).  Planted in August, rye will produce a thick cover, but usually less than one ton of dry matter of biomass before winter dormancy.  It will grow rapidly in early spring.  Terminate rye as a cover crop by late April before it grows too large.


Planting specifications

Seeding rate:  Seed rye for cover at 40-60 lbs per-acre;  80-100 lbs per acre for early spring forage.

Seeding depth:  Drill 1-2” deep or broadcast and lightly till-in.

Fertility needs: Requires 40-60 lbs N for optimal growth (and 20 lbs P2O5 and 90 lbs K2O if for forage).

Management and termination:

Terminate chemically with 21 oz glyphosate per-acre before rye reaches 4” height

In a cover crop mix:

After wheat:  Rye can be mixed with any of the brassica or legume cover crops.  Cut seeding rate by 1/3 in mixes.

Research in Wisconsin:

Planting Winter Rye after Corn Silage – For Forage

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