This paper uses such an approach to compare profit-maximizing fertilizer nitrogen use, no-till corn yields and profits per acre for four cover crop systems (hairy vetch, crimson clover, Austrian peas (Pisum sativum L.
A three-year field study comparing yields of no-till corn following four cover crops (hairy vetch, crimson clover, Austrian peas and winter wheat) and winter fallow was conducted in the Maryland Coastal Plain (5).
Maximum yields with Austrian peas occur at a nitrogen application rate of about 135 k [ha.
Systems with Austrian peas and crimson clover show substantial reductions in profit-maximizing fertilizer use and thus savings in fertilizer expenditures.
Corn yield with a hairy vetch system is only 3% greater than with Austrian peas, but seed for Austrian peas is nearly twice as expensive as hairy vetch.
Crimson clover and Austrian peas are inferior to hairy vetch for agronomic reasons as well as economic ones.
If you have a weed problem, fast-growing cover crops like buckwheat, red clover or Austrian peas can outcompete and smother unwanted invaders.
Frost-tolerant covers like bell bean, Austrian peas and oats can be planted as soon as your soil can be worked.
Fava beans, Austrian peas, crimson clover and vetch are my favorites for planting in the fall (September or early October here in our mild zone 8 Oregon climate) and then tilling under in spring.
Tolerates Wet Conditions: bell beans, subterranean clover, Austrian peas, mustard, oats, ryegrass
Suppresses Weeds: most clovers, Austrian peas, field peas, soybeans, vetches, barley, buckwheat; cereal rye, oats, ryegrass, Sudan grass