Row by Row Episode 258: Summer Cover Crops
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Row by Row Episode 258: Summer Cover Crops

Row by Row Episode 258: Summer Cover Crops

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Summer Cover Crops | What's The Point?

Pollinators! Summer Cover Crops are amazing for attracting beneficial pollinators. You need beneficial pollinators especially if you're growing vegetables near your cover crop plots. If you don't have pollinators, you won't have food! Choosing the right cover crop is extremely important, you will want to choose a "flowering" cover crop that provides nectar and pollen. You will want to allow it to bloom before terminating the cover crop. Many only think of honey bees (we're guilty of it too), but did you know that there are over 100,000 different animal species that provide free pollination services - including butterflies, moths, beetles, birds, etc. One third of human food comes from plants that are pollinated by wild pollinators.

What Should We Know For Summer Cover Crops?

What we should know really depends on what you're looking to accomplish, better yet, it's always better to know as much as you can on a topic. Do you want a cover crop that's tailored to your native pollinators or appeal to diversity of pollinators? Some are just looking for a honey production boost. Other benefits of habitat planting would be for providing shelter for other beneficial insects and songbirds, reducing runoff and soil erosion, or simply improving water quality. Some beneficial pollinators can travel great distances to forage for the nectar, while others cannot.

Product of the Week

WARM SEASON COVER CROPS

Many gardeners, especially beginners, don't necessarily always think about cover crops; summer cover crops are even more on the back burner, simply because many people do not typically "garden" in the cooler months therefore, they will plant a cover crop in the winter months to help improve your their soil. We're trying to change that outlook! So how do we choose a warm season cover crop? Should you just leave your garden plot empty? What does planting summer cover crops actually do? Let's talk about, grow together and get dirty!

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