As small grain harvest moves along, some farmers will plant cover crops into those fields to do things such as improve soil condition, control weeds or provide fall grazing for livestock and wildlife.

Before planting the cover crop seeds, South Dakota Department of Agriculture Plant Industry Program Manager Brenda Sievers reminds farmers to check the source of the seeds and to be sure a lab analysis has been done on them. She says knowing what you’re planting will reduce weed pressure and prevent future germination problems.

Sievers says the cover crop seed label must include:

  • labeler’s name and address
  • percentages for germination,
  • purity
  • other crop and inert matter
  • restricted noxious weed seeds

Seeds cannot contain prohibited noxious weed seeds in any amount. Prohibited noxious weed seeds in South Dakota include:

  • Field Bindweed
  • Leafy Spurge
  • Hoary Cress
  • Russian Knapweed
  • Perennial Sowthistle
  • Canada Thistle
  • Palmer Amaranth
  • Horse Nettle