Time to start thinking about your winter cover crops! Here are two great cover crops to help improve soil fertility and structure:
- Austrian Winter Peas available in 5 pound or 50 pound bags, organic and non-organic
Sow winter peas four to six weeks before the average first frost date. Sometimes called “black pea” and “field pea”, this is a cool-season, annual legume with good nitrogen-fixing capabilities. Usually planted with rye, oats, or barley to reduce the chance of winter kill. Cut and turn under at full bloom for maximum nitrogen.
- Winter Rye available in 5 pound or 50 pound bags, organic
Sow winter rye six weeks before the average first frost date and up to two weeks after. A cold-hardy crop, winter rye will grow well into the spring. Winter Rye increases soil organic matter as it decomposes. Mow one to two times when at least 12 inches tall, or when half of the crop has immature seed heads. Allow residue to decompose for at least two weeks before planting vegetables.
- NEW Winter Rye / Pea Mix available in 5 pound or 50 pound bags, organic
For more information about fall cover crops and their importance, check out this excellent article from Southern Exposure Seed Exchange.