Rye (Trifolium repens)

About Rye

  • In the Midwest, rye is primarily grown as a grain but occasionally for hay or pasture.
  • Rye reduces soil erosion and enhances water retention.
  • The plant is similar to in appearance to that of wheat and barley.
  • Once rye is well established, it is very resistant to cold temperatures.


  • Rich in protein, rye has the capacity to make nutritious bread.
  • Rye makes great livestock feed through grain, forage, or pasture.
  • Although commonly used in baking, rye is gaining popularity in malting and distilling.

Fast Facts

  • Less than 50% of rye grown in the United States is harvested for grain. The rest is used in pasture, hay, or cover cropping.