Instead of cultivating corn, this year, Andy Lacey was busy the first day of June interseeding his 60-inch rows with a cover crop mix.

“The cover crop is essential to protecting the soil from getting too hot and preventing the weeds from germinating,” he said.

The Laceys used to cultivate three times, until the corn was tall enough to protect the soil. Is cover crop mix included 10 species, from ryes and flax to fava beans and turnips. He finished planting soybeans May 27 and still planned to seed cover crops there.

As he planted covers on corn, he sprayed for weeds, which were a problem on about 20 of his 130-acres. With hot days ahead, he expected weeds like waterhemp to germinate.

“Covering the ground is the important part,” Lacey said.

He measured about an inch and a tenth of rain in the last two weeks. Corn was about 4 inches tall and looking very healthy. He expected to cut hay around the first weekend in June. Irrigation was in the future plans as well.

The Laceys calve on pasture in May, and it went well with only one calf lost out of 80.

“I think it’s been a good spring so far,” Lacey said.