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Cover Crops

Purple Top

Common Name

Purple top turnip is an old variety of the Brassica genus that has been used for both human consumption and livestock forage for centuries. Deep rooted, aggressive growth, and succulent foliage and roots make it ideal for both forage and cover crops. 

Livestock intake of the palatable foliage and roots is very high, with high protein and digestibility. Very fast establishment and growth takes only a few months to maximize its potential. Purple top turnips are used extensively in deer forage plots. 

As a cover crop, purple top turnips feed upon residual nitrogen and returns it back to the soil in the form of organic material. Its deep rooting opens up channels through the plow layer and hard pan, letting water infiltrate, thus reducing erosion and boring a pathway for the crop roots to follow. 


  • Deep rooting
  • Fast establishment
  • Seed count approximately 200,000 seeds/lb.
  • Seeding depth 1/4 - 1/2 inch
  • Excellent nitrogen recovery
  • High dry matter yields 
  • Highly adaptable 

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