Nitrogen Contribution of Winter Annual Cover Crops to Sweet Corn Production in Western Oregon (1994)

Report to the Oregon Processed Vegetable Commission

John Luna
OSU Dept. of Horticulture

There is an increasing interest among Oregon vegetable producers in the use of cover crops to improve soil quality, provide biologically fixed nitrogen to reduce fertilizer inputs, and reduce ground water contamination. Because of the cost associated with cover crop establishment and spring incorporation ($25-40/acre), the ability to account for N contribution from the cover crop and reduce fertilizer inputs could help offset the cover crop costs.


  1. The goal of this work is enhance vegetable producers' ability to optimize N fertilizer application rates for crops following winter annual cover crops. Specific objectives of this project include:
  • To evaluate relative growth rates, biomass production, and nitrogen accumulation of selected cover crops species and mixtures.
  • Evaluate the nitrogen contribution of winter annual cover crops to sweet corn production.