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Cover Crop

Practice Code: 340

Growing a crop of grass, small grain or legumes primarily for seasonal protection and soil improvement.

Raindrop and soil graphicPhoto Gallery

Farming With Crop Residues

Farming with Crop Residues, a brochure published by the NRCS, presents photographs of various percentages of ground cover that can be expected using different tillage techniques.

Photo of corn residue left on the ground after tillagePhoto of corn residue left on the ground after tillagePhoto of corn residue left on the ground after tillage




Cornell University Cover Crop Decision Tool

Cover Crops for Vegetable Growers

The Cornell University Cover Crop Decision Tool helps you quickly narrow the choices of cover crop for your situation. 

This tool is based on

  1. the reason you need a cover crop;
  2. when you have a chance to plant; and
  3. how long it can stay in the field until you need to plant your next crop.

<<< Click image for full screen view















Establishing Cover Crops in Corn at Time of Corn Planting

A crop of rye seeded at the time of corn planting provides many benefits

The Big Flats Plant Materials Center in Big Flats, New York has published the following guide for corn producers.

Cover Crops in Corn - A Guide for Corn Producers



Conservation Practice Documents

The following documents require Adobe Reader. All documents are less than 400 KB.

Conservation Practice Standard Overview
NRCS New York Conservation Practice Standard

Field Office Technical Guide (FOTG)Conservation planners shall reference NRCS New York Field Office Technical Guide for additional documents, tools, references, and procedures required with this practice.


Related Conservation Practices

This practice is commonly used in a Conservation Management System with practices such as:

Conservation Crop Rotation
Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Nutrient Management

If you want to learn how you can protect natural resources on your farm or forestland, please contact your local NRCS Service Center.

Service Center Locator


How to Get Assistance




Back to Conservation Practices for New York