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Veteran Advisor

Cover Crops on PP Ground

So, here's perhaps an odd question -- can you plant soybeans as a "cover crop" on PP corn ground without it being considered a 2nd crop for crop insurance purposes?  And, if so, is there any required population range?  Any specific earliest date they could be planted?  And, can they be harvested for grain after November 1 (similar to haying or grazing other cover crops) with no PP corn payment penalty?  Or, would harvesting for grain be allowed at all?

Just curious.

Have read that corn can be used as a "cover crop", but the population requirement is high enough there would likely be little/no grain, and the seed cost as a "cover crop" would be prohibitive.  Yet, some will likely have treated soybean seed that they will want or need to get rid of anyway.  

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Senior Contributor

Re: Cover Crops on PP Ground

Here is my understanding of soybeans as a cover crop. This is Minnesota, check your own state. Soybeans are approved as a cover crop seeded at 30 lbs per acre if incorporated, 45 lbs if not. Can't use brown bag seed. Crop insurance is ok with harvest but if you do you will only get 35% of the 55% for prevent plant.  The problem lies with the FSA office.  We need to certify acres by July 15.  Did you certify as prevent plant corn or soybeans?  If you certified as PP corn you are out of compliance with FSA if you harvest beans. If you certify as beans insurance says you had no PP corn.  Again just my understanding, do your own checking.

Veteran Advisor

Re: Cover Crops on PP Ground

Answers I got were similar, I don't have any PP corn to claim, I just didn't plant as much corn as planned, and am finishing out with beans.  Question came up primarily because of the treated-seed issue -- a guy has PP corn ground and has access to excess treated soybean seed.

Right now, PP corn is the only issue, FSA certify date here for PP corn is by June 10.  Insurance corn PP claim date is anytime after final plant date (May 25) up to 72 hours after end of late planting period (June 14), and no later.  NRCS has a list of "approved" cover crops, insurance adjuster might also.  Soybeans as a cover crop is generally not encouraged, but allowed, no brown-bag seed, 30-60# per acre, preferably mixed with sorghum sudan, or something.  Should only be planted after June 14, or is 2nd crop.  Can't be harvested as grain, or is 2nd crop.  Can't be hayed or grazed until after Nov 1, or is 2nd crop.  A 2nd crop reduces PP payment to 35% of the 55% of guarantee corn PP payment.

Although I trust the answers received, I would verify any/all information with local FSA and crop insurance agent.

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