Cover Crops and Soil Quality in the Deep South

Proposed by: Charles C.Mitchell, Jr.

Presenter: Mitchell Jr., C. C., Extension Specialist & Professor, Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn University, AL 36849

By the late 1800s, most soils in the Deep South had been eroded and degraded from continuous cotton production. A young professor at the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama (now Auburn University), Professor J.F. Duggar, said, “Alabama agriculture will come unto its own when her fields are green in winter.” This was a profound statement for a time when all lands were fall plowed and left to “mellow” over the winter months. He tested his theories by planting winter and summer cover crops in an experiment known today as the “Old Rotation” (circa 1896), the oldest cotton experiment in the world on the campus of Auburn University. We’ll share information learned from this historic old experiment,learn how cover crops have influenced soil quality/soil health and how we propose to put this information into practical use by the Auburn University Soil Testing Laboratory to measure soil quality.

All Accepted Proposals