Southern SARE
Durham Farmers Market
Southern Region Cover Crops Conference Slated for July

Local Foods Drive Economic Development, NCSU Study Finds

Farmers that sell direct to consumers are more interconnected with their local communities.

organic composting
On-Farm Research Grant Call for Proposals Now Available

On-Farm Research Grant Call for Proposals Are Now Available

The grant allows ag professionals to collaborate with farmers on on-farm research projects.

Rhizoma peanut no-till planted into bahiagrass. Photo credit: Jose Dubeux, UFL
Perennial Peanuts in Forage Systems Reduce Inputs, Increase Quality

Perennial Peanuts in Forage Systems Reduce Inputs, Increase Quality

Warm-season legumes combined with warm-season grasses show promise, say UFL researchers.

roller crimped rye
Producer Grant Call for Proposals Now Available

Producer Grant Call for Proposals Now Available

Producer Grants are for farmers/ranchers who are interested in conducting sustainable ag research projects.

Terminating cover crops in hight tunnel
Southern Cover Crop Demonstration Videos

Field Demonstrations of Cover Crops

A series of videos from the Southern Cover Crop Conference highlighting field demonstrations.

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

Producer Grant Call for Proposals are now open. Application deadline is 5 p.m. EST on Nov. 18, 2016.

On-Farm Research Grant Call for Proposals are now open. Application deadline is 5 p.m. EST on Nov. 18, 2016.

Sustainable Community Innovation Grants will not be offered in 2016. Please check back in 2017 for grant opportunities.

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.


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