Filling the seed hopper with the biodiversity planting mix.
Using a 5 foot, no-till drill to plant the seed mix at a rate of 38 lbs per acre.
Adjusting the drill to insure correct seeding rate.
Checking behind the drill to guarantee good seed placement and uniformity.
Drilling the seed in between power poles where the producer typically is unable to grow a crop. This has previously been managed by repeated treatment of herbicide.
Drainage ditch that is highly erodible along crop field.
Planting a 30 ft strip along both sides of a drainage ditch with highly erodible land.
First emergence was averaged to 10 days due to drought and planting dates. Here, you see buckwheat and millet as first to emerge.
The quick covering of an erodible and uncultivated bank between power poles in the margins of a soybean field.
Sunflower emerging. This will provide biomass, shade to reduce weed pressure, and insectary.
You can see here a diverse cover of plants to provide weed suppression and erosion, insectary, and wildlife habitat.
A Japanese Beetle is feeding on the Sunn Hemp leaf. Possible use as a pest trap crop.
Buckwheat is the first to flower providing pollen and nectar during the dirth of summer. Some Buckwheat in the planting was observed to flower at only 4 inches in height or about 3 1/2 weeks of growth.
The drought stress tendency of summer planting is a major variable to be considered. This planting was very sporadic in emergence and had considerable competition with weed pressure due to the drought in the first 3 weeks of growth.
Sunn Hemp blooming to frost. This is the planting on a drainage ditch bank in a soybean crop. Phto taken Oct 29th
Stand of the biodiversity planting the week of the first frost. This planting was crucial in stabilizing the soil through two major hurricane events.
A dense stand of buckwheat coming into bloom. Millet, sunn hemp, and sunflower plants can be seen nearly surpassing the height of the buckwheat in just six weeks.
Sunflowers blooming and being visited by butterflies.
Sunn Hemp standing 10-12 feet tall, producing enormous amounts of biomass and Nitrogen (legume). Also, this was standing after experiencing unprecedented floods and weather of two hurricanes.
Other Photos of Growing Plants for Biodiversity
Zinnias, Buckwheat, and Sunflower planted alongside vegetable crops. Photo and planting by Jerry Simpson of Waxhaw, NC
Mixture of wildflowers planted next to Sweetcorn. Photo and planting by Jerry Simpson of Waxhaw, NC
Biodiverse planting has improved the aesthetics, pollination, and pest management of the farm, says Jerry Simpson of Waxhaw, NC. Photo and planting by Jerry Simpson
Poppy species planted as pollinator and beneficial hedgerow. Photo and planting by Jerry Simpson
Mustard used as a trap crop for Harlequin bug control in cash crops. -Photo credit to Southern SARE