Impact Forage Collard is a cool-season cover crop that is widely considered king of the brassica cover crops. Forage collards produce a significant amount of biomass that can be beneficial for adding organic matter to soils, or for livestock grazing. In a grazing situation, these collards rebound and regrow very well after grazing. They are also very nutrient-dense and palatable to livestock for grazing purposes.
Impact Forage Collard has a deep taproot that grows downward, penetrating hardpans and aerating soils. The deep root not only conditions soils, but it scavenges nutrients and makes them available for the following vegetable crop. The deep taproot also helps to make this cover crop very drought tolerant.
Impact Forage Collard is extremely versatile because it can be grown in a wide range of growing conditions and seasons. Collards are known for their extreme cold tolerance, but are also relatively heat-tolerant compared to other brassicas. The dense ground cover provided by forage collards helps to suppress weeds and reduce erosion. This cover crop can also be used as a biofumigant to suppress pests, pathogens and diseases when incorporated into the soil.
Impact Forage Collard can be grown in fall or early spring. We suggest planting in early/mid-fall with enough time for plants to establish before any hard freezing temperatures. The seed can be broadcast and covered or planted with a precision planter like our Hoss Garden Seeder. If broadcasting, we suggest likely raking the soil to cover seeds and increase seed to soil contact. This will result in better germination and better coverage. As with all cover crops, collards 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.
Impact Forage Collard Planting Information:
Planting Depth: 1/4″
Seeding Rate: 0.5 lb per 1,000 sq. ft.
Cover Crop Recommendation Chart