Skip to main content

Information for Buckwheat Growers

Buckwheat Cover Crop Handbook


Keys to success

A fast start:
The buckwheat must beat the weeds. The practices that assure a fast start are:

  • letting the soil warm up,
  • irrigating if the soil is very dry,
  • sowing as shallow as possible while covering the seed.

No gaps:
Weeds will grow in any gaps over 10 inches wide. Most gaps form when the seeder fails, when broadcasting unevenly or covering with a tool that moves the seed, when the seeds are eaten by insects attracted to fresh residue, or when hard spots in the soil prevent germination, and when water puddles in the field in the week after sowing.

The practices that eliminate gaps are:

  • Prepare the field to eliminate hard soil and lumps
  • Allow crop residue to decompose
  • Sow with precision.

Kill on time:
If the cover crop is to be killed by mowing, the effective time is critical. The crop needs to come into full bloom (typically 35 days after sowing) so that it does not resprout from the lower nodes. It should not have started to make seeds (typically 40 days from July plantings, 45 or 50 from June plantings), because they will mature and grow.

Incorporation extends the effective time until the first seeds are viable, about 45 days.




Buckwheat home