Summer row crops have to deal with high weed pressure. The low population and the relatively long time needed by crops to shade all the soil surface, gives an advantage to summer weeds and creates the conditions for high water evaporation from the bare soil.
Organic No-Till row crops planted under a cover crop mulch offers solutions to these problems. This strategy relies on mechanical termination of a cover crop with a roller-crimper and sowings with a no-till planter. The mulch has the functions of controlling weeds during the initial crop growth stages and to limit water consumption by evaporation. Legume cover crops can fix an important amount of nitrogen. Tests have been carried out for maize and soybean.
Stefano Bortolussi, AIAB