A message from Richard Barnes of Kings Cover Crops - Groundswell's Cover Crop Partner.
The event is almost here and the Kings team is working hard on final preparations to ensure an informative and valuable day for visitors. As the official cover crop partner for Groundswell, we’ve provided crops for the 25ha working demonstration area and 14 individual crop plots to demonstrate the impressive benefits of green cover crops on the no-till day on 29th June. Now in its second year, we’re excited to be involved with this innovative event and can’t wait to meet growers next week.
With less than a week to go, crops are looking good, though it was a bit touch and go earlier in the year as, like many crops across the country, they were in desperate need of moisture! They have now come on brilliantly and the field scale crops will provide the perfect drilling area for machinery demonstrations, while growers have plenty to explore with the Kings advisors in the trial plot area. Given the prolonged dry spell just after drilling, we’ve been very impressed with how resilient plants can be and their recovery rate given rain, and also at how effective the various drills have been at creating a seedbed without disturbing the soil surface.
Individual plots include straight oil radish, Tillage radish, turnip rape, buckwheat and phacelia as well as a number of mixes, including Kings’ popular Soil Structure Mix and Vitality Mix. In the demonstration area, machinery will drill into oil radish, an oil radish and oat mix and Kings Soil Vitality Mix.
Interest in the use of green cover crops to support no-till agriculture continues to develop at a great pace across the UK. It’s easy to see why, as the benefits can be considerable when grown in the right circumstances:
· Improved soil structure, drainage and soil organic matter levels
· Reduced leaching of valuable nutrients from bare soils
· Fulfilment of EFA and stewardship scheme requirements
· Reduction of soil pests, diseases and weeds
· Yield improvements
· Grazing opportunities.
Expert advice on variety selection, establishment and management is essential to make sure the chosen crop is suitable to achieve the intended results. Drawing on vast experience and evidence from our extensive on farm testing and evaluation of green cover crops,
Kings’ technical team will be on hand at the event to answer all your queries and discuss how to integrate green cover into your rotation. Visit us at Stand E11 on 28th June, and the demo plot area in the demonstration field on 29th June.