Our NRCS representative contacted us. We will try to pass along information when we hear from them in case it helps anyone else.
We have been talking with them about cover crops. We are not sure how many beds we will be able to create before winter. But we do want to make sure that any exposed dirt is planted with a cover crop. We will then use a Precision Depth Roller to grind the crop back into the top several inches of soil in the Spring.
Our rep recommended Hairy Vetch which we were also looking at based on our own research. He said they have seen excellent results from the crop for fixing atmospheric nitrogen. The only problem (at least here in Alaska) is finding a local source. We will let you know when we resolve that.
Our game plan is to mix a variety of cover crops together to get the best soil enhancement. Hairy Vetch will be one component. NRCS also reminded us to purchase pre-inoculated seeds or purchase the correct inoculant for each legume.
They recommended two good publications. Managing Cover Crops Profitably is one that we already mentioned in a prior post. It is an excellent read with some good nuggets. The other publication they recommended is Cover Crops in Organic Systems. We will look forward to digging into the second publication. So much to learn… so little time.
Be well & dream green!