Southern SARE
Wind Breaks
Southern Region Cover Crops Conference Slated for July

Research & Education Grant Call for Proposals Now Open

New This Year: Applicants may submit either a systems research-based pre-proposal or an education-based pre-proposal.

goat milking
On-Farm Research Grant Call for Proposals Now Available

Graduate Student Grant Call for Proposals Open

Application deadline is May 5 at 5 p.m. EST.

Arkansas berries
Berries Thrive in High Tunnels, But Be Aware of Pests

Berries Thrive in High Tunnels, But Be Aware of Pests

University of Arkansas study shows high tunnels can boost berry productivity.

citrus slices Photo courtesy of USDA-ARS
Producer Grant Call for Proposals Now Available

Essential Oils Decrease Fruit Decay in Citrus Crops

The natural method also helps control fruit diseases.

buckwheat as a trap crop
Southern Cover Crop Demonstration Videos

Cover Crops Acting as Trap Crops Attract Beneficials, Control Pests in Vegetables

Florida farmers adopting the IPM strategy as an alternative to chemical insecticides.

Press Releases Upcoming Events SARE in Your State

Since 1988, SARE has awarded numerous grants in every state and Island Protectorate aimed at advancing sustainable agriculture innovations. Click on your state to learn more about SARE's efforts in the Southern region.

Alabama | Arkansas | Florida | Georgia | Kentucky | Louisiana | Mississippi | North Carolina | Oklahoma | Puerto Rico | South Carolina | Tennessee | Texas | U.S. Virgin Islands | Virginia

Why Cover Crops?

Farmers Share Their Perspectives in SARE Video Series

"If somebody posed the question—would I farm without cover crops—I would say no," insists Kirk Brock, who grows corn, soybeans and peanuts on 1,000 acres in Monticello, Fla. His cover crop of choice, cereal rye, protects his hilly ground from erosion, and helps with weed control and moisture retention.

Brock is one of nearly two dozen farmers featured in SARE's Cover Crop Innovators video series. From row crops to diversified vegetables, these farmers explain how and why cover crops are an indispensable part of their rotations. Cover crops improve yields, protect the soil, retain moisture, increase organic matter and provide many other benefits, and acreage planted to cover crops is increasing across the country, according to a four-year national survey.

Stories from the Southern Region include:

Barry Martin - Hawkinsville, Georgia


Barry Martin plants peanuts, cotton, corn, soybeans, wheat and grain sorghum, and uses strip till. Rye is his main cover crop, which he plants to retain moisture, build organic matter and help control the herbicide-resistant weed Palmer amaranth.

Cody Galligan - Gainesville, Florida


Cody Galligan runs a certified organic, highly diversified vegetable operation on seven acres. He grows cover crops of sorghum, sunn hemp and iron clay peas mainly in the summer off season to aid in weed and nematode suppression.

John Bitter - Hawthorne, Florida


At Frog Song Organics in North Central Florida, John Bitter grows upwards of 80 crops in a year. Figuring out his rotations is the key to success as an organic farmer, and cover crops are an integral part of every rotation.

Jordan Brown - Gainesville, Florida


The Family Garden is a certified organic, diversified vegetable farm. Jordan Brown's cover crops typically include oats or rye in the fall through spring, and sunn hemp or sudangrass in the summer. Building soil organic matter is difficult in his climate and production system, so Brown uses cover crops every chance he can.

Kirk Brock - Monticello, Florida


"If somebody posed the question - would I farm without cover crops - I would say no," says Kirk Brock, who grows peanuts, corn and soybeans on 1,000 acres in Northern Florida. Cereal rye has been Brock's go-to cover crop, but he is now experimenting with mixes that include ryegrass, clover and blue lupine.

Noah Shitama - Alachua, Florida


Noah Shitama markets a diverse range of produce largely through a 220-member CSA and restaurant sales. "We're trying to establish as much diversity as possible throughout the farm," Shitama says, and cover crops are an integral part.

Stephen Fulford - Monticello, Florida


Stephen Fulford, a 3rd generation farmer, grows peanuts, soybeans and corn, and planted his first cover crop of cereal rye in 2009. One of the main benefits he has seen from cover crops is that the surface residue and improved soil quality allow for better moisture retention and protection against erosion.

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Open Grant Calls for Proposals

The 2017 Graduate Student Grant CFP is now open. Application deadline is 5 p.m. EST on May 5, 2017.

The 2018 Research & Education Grant CFP is now open. New this year: Applicants have a choice to apply for either a systems research-based project, or an education-based project for education and outreach projects and activities. Application deadline is 5 p.m. EST on June 2, 2017.

The 2018 Professional Development Program Grant CFP is now open. Application deadline is 5 p.m. EST on June 2, 2017.

To receive notifications of calls via e-mail, contact the Southern SARE office:

Southern SARE Main Office
1109 Experiment St., Stuckey Building
University of Georgia
Griffin, Ga. 30223
Ph: 770-412-4786
Fax: 770-412-4789


SSARE Grants: How It Works

Want to know the ins and outs of our granting process? Read our handy guide, How It Works, to learn more about each of our grants, the proposal submission process, and how we review and award grants each year.

HowitWorks2017.pdf 442.84 kB

Hot Topics in Sustainable Agriculture

Visit SARE's Topic Rooms for in-depth resources on important topics in sustainable agriculture. In the Southern region, such resources include:

Aquaculture and Aquaponics

Forestry and Agroforestry

Honeybees, Native Bees and Alternative Pollinators

Pastured Poultry

Small Ruminants

Water Conservation on the High Plains