Turnips may be the perfect dual-purpose cover crop. First, their tubers and roots penetrate the soil and cycle nutrients. Early fall planted turnips provide a massive amount of dry matter, while helping to control erosion and suppress weeds. They also work great as a forage crop, especially when mixed with small grains to extend the fall grazing period. While popular options like purple top turnips have large bulbs or tubes, some varieties are bred for a lesser bulb size and larger tops. These options work especially well in grazing environments, and depending on how quickly they regrow, some varieties even allow for multiple grazing cycles during the fall. Because of their small seed size, turnips tend to establish easier in aerial and broadcast applications when compared to radishes, especially in dry conditions and when seeding time may be alter in t he season due to late crop harvests.
- Excellent dual-purpose cover crop
- Aids in breaking up compaction
- Sequester excess nutrients left from cash crops
- Small seed size is conducive for easier planting (especially in broadcast applications)
- Provide good early season weed suppression
- Turnips should be combined with other forages, namely lesser digestible options like grass or dry hay in ruminant animals (to prevent potential livestock disorders)
- Price: Call
- Seeding Rate (lbs per acre): 2-4
- Seeding Date: Aug. - Sept.
- Days to Germinate: 14