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Jimmy Carter Plant Materials Center (GAPMC)
Serving areas in the States of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee

Established: 1936
Size: 327 acres
PMC Operation: NRCS
Land Ownership: NRCS

Image of a closeup of mixed cover crop plant species in bloom.

The Jimmy Carter Plant Materials Center (GAPMC) is one of a national network of 25 centers dedicated to providing vegetative solutions and developing and transferring plant science technology to solve conservation issues. The primary focus of this center is improving soil health.

The Jimmy Carter Plant Materials Center is one of four centers serving the Southeast/Tropical region.  The other centers are located in Coffeeville, MS; Brooksville, FL, and Ho’olehua, HI.

The Center finds plant solutions for the diverse landscape of the southeast and has developed over 18 improved conservation plants, including grasses, forbs, and shrub germplasm.  The Jimmy Carter Plant Materials Center develops technology for improving landscapes, such as agricultural lands, grazing lands, wildlife areas, restoration areas, coastal dunes, and urban settings.



This study is part of a national effort by the Plant Materials program to determine the adapted range of many different commercially available varieties of cool season plant species that are used as cover crops.  With over 60 different varieties of at least 9 different plant species, this study is designed to determine the cover crops that are best suited for each region of the country.  A regional study for the Southeast/Tropical region is also underway to determine the adapted range of warm season species.  This study includes 13 species and 23 cultivars. The goal of these studies is to provide NRCS field staff, farmers, and other interested parties with a list of the most well adapted cover crop options for any given location.


The long-term soil health study is designed to determine how long- term management implementing conservation practices, such as cover crops and reduced-tillage, into an agronomic system have on both physical and biological soil properties.  Treatments vary from plots that are subjected to winter fallow periods with conventional tillage practices to winter cover crops and no-till.  This study examines what effects the treatments have on attributes such as soil bulk density, soil aggregate stability, soil organic matter, and many other properties associated with soil health.   This study is scheduled for 10 years.


A companion to the long-term soil health study, the cover crop composition study is examining the effects that mixed species cover crops have on soil attributes in an agronomic system.  Cover crop treatments in this study vary from simple single species cover crops to complex multi-species mixed cover crops.  This study will determine what soil health benefits a farmer might expect to see by planting mixed cover crops in their existing agronomic rotation.


Crimson clover seeding rates are being examined to determine the most appropriate seeding rate when planting crimson clover as a cover crop. Current crimson clover seeding rates have been used successfully for many years but have not differentiated between clean clover seed and clover seed that is coated.  This study is designed to identify any differences between coated and uncoated clover seed and possibly develop new seeding rates for coated crimson clover when planted as a cover crop.


Yellow Indiangrass is a native warm season grass that is used for erosion control, livestock forage, and wildlife plantings.  This study is a partnership with 5 other plant materials centers across the county to examine the adaptability of a new variety of Yellow Indiangrass across much of the U.S.  Some of the plant characteristics measured in this study include plant height, plant growth and vigor, insect and disease susceptibility, and seed production.  The goal is to determine the adapted range of this new variety so that it can be recommended for plantings in the areas in which it is best suited. 

Jimmy Carter Plant Materials Center
295 Morris Dr.
Americus, GA 31719
Phone: (229) 514-3245
Fax: (855) 409-5062