What’s the best way to avoid potential yield drag when planting corn after a cereal rye cover crop? New research out of Iowa State University may help growers answer those questions.

The answer, it seems, may be in the timing. Increasing the time between cover crop termination and main crop planting can reduce the risk of seedling disease, one of the causes for yield drag.

There can be abiotic reasons for reduced plant population. Too much cover crop residue can make it difficult to plant the seed deep enough. Experience helps make those necessary planter adjustments.

But there are also biotic reasons. Iowa State University Extension plant pathologist Alison...