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Cover Crop - Buckwheat

How to Grow Buckwheat as a Cover Crop

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Buckwheat growing.
Photo © Flickr user TANAKA Juuyoh

What is it: Buckwheat is a fast-growing, warm-season annual with a fibrous root system. It germinates quickly, doesn’t require much water, and tolerates poor soil well.

Seeding rate: One pound per 500 square feet, or 36 to 72 pounds per acre.

Why use it: Buckwheat grows so fast that it is perfect for smothering out weeds. Because it grows so quickly, it can be easily used to fill in between other crops. It can be planted later in the season than any other summer grain crop. It flowers beautifully, and can provide a habitat for pollinating insects or other beneficial bugs.

When to kill it: Mow buckwheat within two weeks of the first flowering. You can turn them into the soil and plant immediately.

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