Nitrogen dynamics and yields of fresh bean and sweet corn with different cover crops and planting dates

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Cover crops are recommended to mitigate nitrogen losses but may also improve crop yields. This study compared the effects of different cover crops and planting dates on crop yields and nitrogen cycling. All cover crops tested worked before corn but only the oat cover crop increased fresh bean yield, suggesting that recommendations need to be tailored to each crop. Benefits to crop yields were not due to nitrogen alone, suggesting that another mechanism was involved. Cover crops can improve productivity while minimizing potential for nitrogen losses in the non-growing season .

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