The Imprinting vs. Drilling of Cover Crops trial (Figure 1) was developed to: 1) investigate appropriate techniques for establishing cover crops, and 2) to examine the utility of planting native species in combination with a cover crop (i.e., a "nurse species").

The impetus for this trial came from the understanding that it will no doubt be necessary to undertake large-scale restoration in phases. Cover crops will most likely be an important tool in the implementation of restoration, particularly if the cover crops can be planted with minimal soil preparation.

Plots were ca. 0.6 ha (1.5 ac) in size; each treatment was replicated three times. Two seed "mixtures" were used: 1) barley; and 2) barley in combination with three native grasses. Data (percent cover and species composition) were collected from eight quadrats (35 x 70 cm) per plot. Installation of the experiment was undertaken in the fall of 2000; vegetation sampling was conducted the following spring (14-15 May, 2001).

Map showing the location and configuation of the two Imprinting vs. Drilling trials
Figure 1. Experimental design of the Imprinting vs. Drilling of Cover Crops trial (leftmost 12 plots).

Page created: March 1, 2005; Last updated: Dec. 20, 2005