Broadleaf Mustard is a cool-season cover crop that is one of the best for managing soil pests and pathogens. The residue from this cover crop produces a chemical compound called glucosinolate, which suppresses many common pests and diseases. It is the best cover crop for suppressing and reducing nematode populations and harmful soil fungi. Mustard can also reduce insect pests and weeds population as it decomposes.
Broadleaf Mustard is able to scavenge nitrogen from surrounding soils and make that nitrogen available for the subsequently planted crop. It also provides a significant amount of biomass that will increase the organic matter composition of soils, improving soil tilth, and quality. The significant biomass is also important for erosion control. This will prevent water runoff and reduce nutrient leaching in periods of heavy precipitation. Compared to similar brassicas, mustard has a large taproot that extends deep into the bottom soil layers. This taproot will serve to loosen hard, clay soils, improving aeration, and soil drainage. Mustard grows very fast, which allows it to outpace the growth of weeds. Once established, the mustard will provide enough soil cover to prevent any future weeds from developing.
Broadleaf Mustard can be grown in fall or early spring. We suggest planting in early/mid-fall with enough time for plants to establish before frost arrives. The seed can be broadcast and covered or planted with a precision planter like our Hoss Garden Seeder. As with all cover crops, mustard should be cut or mowed before going to seed to prevent any residual weed issues. Once cut, incorporate into the soil as green manure for best results. Mustard can also be used as forage and works great as a component of a food plot mixture.
Broadleaf Mustard Planting Information:
Planting Depth: 1/4″
Seeding Rate: 0.5 lb per 1,000 sq. ft.
Cover Crop Recommendation Chart