Southern Cover Crops Council (SCCC)
Southern Cover Crops Council
Visit the Southern Cover Crops Council (SCCC) website HERE.
Needs Assessment Activities: The issues identified below emerged from a needs assessment with farmers, technical advisors, and other agricultural professionals over a period of two years (2016-17).
- Southern Region Assessment of Research Priorities:
- A team consisting of at least one representative from each state and territory in the Southern region conducted a region-wide assessment of research priorities as part of a SSARE planning grant.
- 56 individuals from 11 states and 2 territories responded and identified 188 topics.
- The study team then categorized them by topic and sub-topic.
- This effort was led by Dr. Lee Meyer (University of Kentucky) with assistance from Dr. Carlene Chase (University of Florida).
- We conducted a systematic evaluation of all sessions and field demonstrations at the 2016 Southern Cover Crops Conference (SCCC) also funded through the SSARE planning grant.
- The evaluation included the identification of research and outreach needs by participants at the conference.
- This effort was led by Dr. Lee Meyer (University of Kentucky) and Dr. Carlene Chase, Dr. Mickie Swisher, and Kaylene Sattanno (University of Florida).
- Faculty members at the University of Florida conducted a statewide survey of stakeholders in Florida to deepen their understanding of the barriers, opportunities, and needs of producers in the sub-tropical coastal plain sub-region of the South where cropping systems, climate, and soils differ from those of the other sub-regions.
- This effort was led by Dr. Mickie Swisher and Kaylene Sattanno at the University of Florida.
- The SCCC established a strategy team responsible for identifying the research priorities to address through region-wide research and establishing the goals and objectives for a multi-state research (Hatch) proposal.
- Drs. Mickie Swisher and Carlene Chase led the team that conducted an expert elicitation of critical objectives with 23 members of the SCCC whom participated via e-mail or teleconference in this process.
Cover Crop Priorities for Florida
Florida assessment focused on three major questions:
- What are the major barriers to adoption of cover crops by people who currently do not use cover crops?
- What are the major challenges in using cover crops among farmers who do currently use cover crops?
- What kinds of research are needed to address the barriers and challenges identified?
Five major priorities emerged:
- Pest management
- Benefits of cover crops on soil health and biology, both over the short and long term
- Nutrient budgets and economics of cover crop use
- Managing cover crop establishment, termination and residues
- Breeding and selection of both cover crop varieties and mixtures of cover crops
A large number of respondents also noted that the research should have an integrated approach that employs both on-station and on-farm trials.