Some producers this year will have prevented plant acres on spring planted crops. On prevented plant acres, you have two options. One- leave the acres idle or plant a cover crop after the late planting period. It has been a rule in the past that if a cover crop is planted, it has to remain as is until November 1. Then the producer can either hay or graze it, but NOT harvest for grain or chopping for silage, etc. If the cover crop is harvested in any manner prior to Nov. 1 the PP payment will be reduced by 65%. The second option is take that 65% reduction in payment and plant and insure a different applicable crop as long as it is planted post late plant period of the prevented plant crop.
June 20, 2019, USDA has released the announcement of “Prevented Plant Cover Crop Relief”. It states that the cover crop on prevented plant acreage may now be harvested post September 1, 2019. This is due to the fact of the extreme weather events we have experienced and an attempt to make more feed available for livestock. The cover crops may be harvested for hay, grazed or cut for silage, haylage and baleage for this year only.
Please be advised as you make your cover crop seed buying decisions, that the cover crop is on the approved list for the county you are planting in. Your local NRCS office will have this list.