Cereal Rye

  • Scientific name: Secale cereale
  • One of the most versatile cover crops
  • Widely and commonly used
  • Winter hardy
  • Fast growing
  • Scavenges excess nitrates
  • Suppresses weeds

Quantity is per pound. Example: 1 = 1 lb, 2 = 2 lbs, 3 = 3lbs, etc. This is pure seed, not a live plant.

SKU CEREAL-RYE Categories ,


Cereal rye (Secale cereale) is one of the most versatile and commonly used cover crops in the country. If you are looking for a winter hardy cereal crop with fast spring growth, than this is your perfect cover crop. Rye is known for its late fall to early spring nutrient scavenging and grazing potential. It has been successfully used for erosion control in some areas.

Other Names:  winter rye, grain rye
Rye Type: cool season annual cereal grain
Main Roles: scavenge excess nitrates, prevent erosion, add organic matter, suppress weeds
Great mixed with: legumes, grasses or other cereal grains

Cereal Rye (Secale cereale) is taller and quicker-growing than wheat. It can serve as a windbreak and trap snow or hold rainfall over winter. It sows readily into many high-value and agronomic crops and resumes growth quickly in spring, allowing timely killing by rolling, mowing or herbicides. Many like to pair rye with a winter annual legume such as hairy vetch.

*** Click on the “Quick Plant Facts” tab above for more information.***

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(secale cereale)

Cereal Rye NRCS Plant Guide and Fact Sheet

PDF version of NRCS Plant Guide & Fact Sheet

Prepared By & Species Coordinator: USDA NRCS Plant Materials Program

Download PDF

(Secale cereale)

Cereal Rye Plant Sheet

PDF version of NRCS Plant Guide and Fact Sheet

Prepared By: UVM Extension Crops & Soils Team

Download PDF

Helpful Links

Additional information about this product can be found on the academic websites linked below.


Many plants have more than one common and scientific name. We've listed a few of them below.

  • Cereal Rye
  • Secale cereale
  • Winter Rye

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Quick Plant Facts
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Cereal Rye

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