This is the overwinter workhorse soil rejuvenator for us. We put in about 75 acres of this during the '17-'18 winter, which is a pretty typical amount for us.
A flowing field of red really creates a peaceful view from the road. It's this bucolic image that I like to think of when I think of farming. Land stewardship.
A summer cover crop. Hardy and easy to grow. The bee keeper that maintains bees on our land always asks for this. Buckwheat honey happens to be a thing.
Following our fescue sod harvest last fall we drilled in oats, never breaking the ground. This way, soil life will survive over winter by having active roots to live symbiotically with. And when we do take iron to this patch next summer in preparation for fescue planting, we'll be working organic matter back in.
With their deep rooting ability, radishes and turnips do a great job of breaking up hardpan. Our intention for the soybean growing season of 2020 is to mow this crop down, terminate it, then drill in soybeans. This piece of ground will go from sod to soybeans without a plow ever touching it.
Although, this is in fact an income producing crop for us. It's benefit is greater than just the financial gain. Last year, during the 2017 growing season we increased our organic matter by .5% where our alfalfa is grown. I feel this is sort of an off-setting credit to our sod operation. I love alfalfa.