Building Knowledge about Wisconsin’s Cover Crops: A farmer research project

Daniel H. Smith, Southwest Regional Specialist, Nutrient and Pest Management Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Let’s make cover crops work for Wisconsin!

We’re looking for some high-quality on-farm data to help improve our understanding about the who, what, why, where, and when of cover crops. Our team has developed a survey for a second season of farmer research to help us improve cover crop recommendations and use in the state. We would greatly appreciate your help promoting this survey this summer!

Who is collecting this data and why 

CCROP is a group of researchers and educators working with the University of Wisconsin and other partners to improve cover crop recommendations for the state of Wisconsin. We need to better understand how cover crops are being used, the challenges, and what benefits producers are seeing. Our goals are to help farmers like you make sound management decisions, improving decision support tools like SnapPlus and helping build the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial database.

Join us!

Phase 1 – Online survey 

  1. Farmers filling out the survey will be eligible for a $25 stipend. To sign up please provide your contact information via this form. To safeguard your privacy, any field data you provide will neverbe associated with your personal information. We will not share any contact/personal information when sharing the survey results.
  2. After you have provided us with your email and address, you’ll receive a link to the data collection survey a little later this summer. We will also share a short instructional video providing useful information on gathering your cover crop data.

Phase 2 – Field photos & Biomass sampling

  1. Farmers willing to contribute photos and biomass samples of cover crops are eligible for an additional $75 stipend. We will email you asking for photos of the cover crop at seeding, two weeks following seeding, and four weeks following seeding. (We’ve got another short video on how to take the photos.)
  2. For those of you joining us in Phase 2, we will contact you in late fall 2021 to verify field location and ask permission to collect an optional biomass sample.

We will share a final report with everyone toward the end of the year, highlighting our findings and how your data compares to others.  We’ll also keep you informed via regular emails as the study progresses. Your participation is voluntary, and you can leave the project at any time. Thank you!

Questions or Comments?

Dan Smith, University of Wisconsin-Madison & Extension Southwest Regional Outreach Specialist for the Nutrient and Pest Management (NPM) Program. Email Dan Smith, 608-219-5170.