Cover Crop and Annual Forage Field Day June 29 near Sidney

Cover Crop and Annual Forage Field Day June 29 near Sidney

Incorporating cover crops into western Nebraska cropping systems offers its own challenges and also its own rewards for livestock producers. In western Nebraska, as compared to eastern Nebraska, there is less irrigation and rainfall, more night-time cooling, and a shorter growing season after grain harvest, all of which can affect cover crop selection, growth, and use.

"Working annual forages, which may include mixtures often used in cover crops, into a cropping rotation and then using them for livestock grazing may make sense for producers here," said Karla Jenkins, Nebraska Extension cow-calf range management specialist.

To address cover crop forage production questions specific to western Nebraska a team of specialists in beef, forages, cropping systems, and soils are conducting multi-year studies. They will be hosting a field day June 29 to share what they're finding.

The event, sponsored by Nebraska Extension, will be at the University of Nebraska High Plains Ag Lab near Sidney. The lab is six miles northwest of Sidney at 3257 RD 109. (See map.)

Topics and Speakers

  • Are Cover Crops a Viable Option for Western Nebraska Dryland Crop Production? — Cody Creech, Nebraska Extension dryland cropping systems specialist
  • Annual Forages for Beef Cattle in Western Nebraska — Karla Jenkins, Nebraska Extension cow-calf range management specialist
  • Field Tour of Ongoing Cover Crop Research — Mitch Stephenson, Nebraska Extension range and forage management specialist
  • Group Discussion on the use of cover crops and annual forages in western Nebraska


This event is free and includes lunch, thus reservations are needed for a meal count. If you’re planning to attend, please RSVP by June 19 to the Panhandle Research and Extension Center at 308-632-1230 or email Karla Jenkins at

Cover crop trial
Figure 1. Cover crops planted in one of the field trials at the University's High Plains Ag Lab near Sidney.

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