Living or cover crop mulches may reduce pesticide and fertilizer use while protecting the soil. Three systems in cabbage [hairy vetch cover crop mulch (HV), cereal rye cover crop mulch (CR), and a perennial ryegrass living mulch (PR)] or two systems in snap beans (CR and PR) were compared to conventional fall-tillage with trifluralin (CT). The CR with fall-planted rye was best for suppressing weeds. None of the mulches adequately suppressed cabbage insect pests. In 1992, hairy vetch regrowth reduced cabbage growth and yield. Snap bean yields were reduced in the CR system. The mulches are more management intensive and variable than the CT. CR was the most promising mulch, but further research is needed to develop approaches that prevent snap bean yield loss.
- Cropping system
- Reduced tillage
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Agronomy and Crop Science