While cover crops are an excellent management tool for sustainable agriculture, decreases in corn yield have been observed following winter rye cover crops. This project tests the hypothesis that glyphosate-killed rye cover crops are hosts for corn seedling pathogens. There will be studies in a controlled environment and on-farm field studies, as well as testing of management strategies to prevent or minimize corn yield decreases.
Tom Kaspar is a Plant Physiologist at the USDA-ARS National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment in Ames, Iowa. He also serves as a USDA Collaborator/Professor with the Agronomy Department at Iowa State University. He focuses on crop and soil management to improve water quality and soil productivity. His recent research has focused on the environmental benefits of small grain cover crops in corn-soybean rotations.
Tom Moorman, USDA-ARS National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment