Nurse crops are an annual grain or grass used to prevent erosion and assist in the establishment of your primary grass planting. The species and application rate will vary from one project to another, but the basic principles apply across the board. Using nurse crops is typically the least expensive method of erosion control. Although admittedly not as effective as other methods, it offers great value, especially on large sites.
|When To Use|
|Spring Wheat or Oats:||April – June|
|Oats:||August – October|
|Winter Wheat:||August – Dormant Seeding|
|Annual Ryegrass:||April – June and August – Dormant seeding|
|Sterile Triticale:||April – Dormant Seeding|
|Rye:||April – Dormant Seeding|
Vary by project and the make up of the permanent seed mix. The Nurse or Cover crop should not exceed 10% of a total turf mixture while nurse crop in a native seeding is often around 35% of the total mixture due to the native plants establishing slower. A typical seeding rate is going to be 10 to 20 pounds per acre. Use caution when using annual grasses such as annual ryegrass in turf. If allowed to drop seed, the annual may return in following years and detract from the appearance of the intended turf grass. Never use Annual Bluegrass as this is very difficult to remove from the permanent turf.