Patagonia INTA Hairy Vetch

Patagonia INTA was bred in Southern Argentina for winter hardiness, early growth and high yields. It is an excellent choice for cover crop, wildlife and forage use where early spring growth is desired. It has tremendous branching and rooting and high nitrogen fixation.

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Variety Summary

Patagonia INTA has shown high yields and excellent frost tolerance in different evaluations in both Argentina and the US. Furthermore, in US trials, Patagonia Inta shows excellent weed suppression, extensive branching and rooting, and high nitrogen fixation.


Early Maturity

Patagonia INTA is similar in maturity to AU Merit and about two weeks earlier than most other hairy vetch cultivars. When used as a cover crop, this means more biological N fixation (BNF) potential exists for early spring planted crops.

High Forage Yield

Patagonia INTA’s early maturity also contributes to its high forage production and increased value for early spring grazing as well as early bio-mass for cover crops.

Winter Hardiness

Patagonia INTA was selected in Southern Argentina for improved winter hardiness and has shown excellent performance to date in trials in the United States.

Abundant Nitrogen

Patagonia INTA has shown the ability to fixate an abundance of nitrogen. This is useful for converting into both high-value forage feed as well contribution toward subsequent crop nutrition in cover crop applications.

Extensive Branching and Root System

Patagonia INTA has very extensive branching at the crown level and an abundant root structure, giving it good recovery from grazing and browsing as well as improving soil health and stability.

Attracts Wildlife/Pollinators

Patagonia INTA provides abundant forage and flowers ideal to attract and feed numerous pollinators and other wildlife habitat.


Patagonia INTA was bred at the research station EEA H. Ascasubi of the National Institute for Agricultural Technology (INTA), in the southwest of Buenos Aires province. The variety is a result of a five-year selection period where multiple populations from the regions farmers were evaluated together and selected for faster establishment, high number of stems/plant, resistance to foliar disease and synchronized flowering time. Cold and drought tolerance and total biomass production were also important selection criteria. Breeder seed was first produced in 2010. This variety is registered in Argentina under the name of Ascasubi INTA and is sold in the United State as Patagonia INTA.

Lots of Nitrogen

Research from University of Tennessee and Mississippi State University confirm that Patagonia INTA is not only a high yielding variety capable of producing significant biomass, but it is also a leading nitrogen-fixing legume ideal for cover crop applications desiring the capture and conversion of free nitrogen.


The University of Tennessee conducted an extensive cover crop study in 2019-20, encompassing over 60 varieties planted in three locations representing east, west, and central regions of the state. In this trial Patagonia INTA was noted as one of the varieties which not only exhibited the highest biomass, best canopy cover (weed suppression), but also was amongst the top three for most nitrogen content, and greatest estimated nitrogen release. Read the complete study here. This study is expected to be duplicated over the fall/spring of 2020-21, with results expected by fall of 2021.

University of Tennessee

Nitrogen (Ton DM/A)

Multiple Locations



VarietyTotal % Nitrogen
AU Merit HV4.103.904.00
Patagonia INTA HV4.003.503.75
WinterKing HV3.903.403.65
Villana HV3.803.503.65
Namoi Woolypod3.803.303.55
Purple Bounty HV4.003.003.50
Common Vetch3.302.703.00

See complete trial here.

University of Tennessee

Estimated Nitrogen Release (Tons DM/A)

Multiple Locations



VarietyTotal Estimated N Released after 12 weeks (lbs/ac)
AU Merit HV44.3091.7068.00
WinterKing HV40.0061.7050.85
Patagonia INTA HV37.0062.7049.85
Common Vetch18.7070.0044.35
Villana HV25.3061.7043.50
Purple Bounty HV29.0053.3041.15
Namoi Woolypod27.0046.0036.50

See complete trial here.

High Yields

Patagonia INTA has been independently evaluate in the United States in Ohio, Tennessee and Mississippi. At each location, it has been one of the highest yielding hairy vetch entries.

Patagonia Inta plant

University of Tennessee

Biomass (Tons DM/A)

Multiple Location



VarietyApril TerminationMay TerminationAve
AU Merit HV1.202.301.75
WinterKing HV1.201.801.50
Patagonia INTA HV1.001.901.45
Common Vetch0.602.201.40
Purple Bounty HV0.801.901.35
Villana HV0.701.601.15
Namoi Woolypod0.801.501.15

See complete trial here.

Patagona INTA showing Frost Tolerance in Argentina 07-31-18

Patgonia INTA showing frost tolerance in Argentina (07-31-18)

Winter Hardiness

In addition to trials in Argentina, Patagonia INTA was planted on September 11, 2019 in Central Ohio at The Ohio State University’s South Charleston research farm. During that trial it not only produced 1.32 tons DM/ac by May 7, 2020, but also had a  94% stand. Patagonia INTA performed essentially equal to AU Merit and WinterKing hairy vetch varieties. Patagonia INTA has been entered again in the 2020-21 trial, with results expected by fall of 2021.

Abundant branching and healthy roots

In 2018, Patagonia INTA was part of a cover crop study that ended up accidentally turning into a grazing persistence study. From that study, we found that Patagonia INTA was well suited for intensive grazing and appears to exhibit abundant branching from the crown as well. It also has a fantastic root network. Watch these videos to learn more.

Weed Suppression

While hairy vetch may not be as fast growing as some weeds, varieties like Patagonia INTA can smother many weeds out and prohibit spring weeds from germination. With its abundant branching, leafiness, and tall growth Patagonia INTA has been shown to be a great choice to reduce unwanted weeds.

Patagonia Inta vetch plant and flowers in a field

Patagonia INTA

Coat for Optimal Performance

For optimal performance, Patagonia INTA should be inoculated with Rhizobium leguminosarum biovar viceae. This is best achieved with Nitro-Coat®.

Coated vetch seed

Planting Instructions

Patagonia INTA hairy vetch can be seeded at a rate of 10-40 lbs/acre depending on the mix or purpose. For best results, plant 3-6 weeks prior to the average first killing frost. Ideal seeding depth: ½–1½".


Roll kill, selective or non-selective herbicide allows for no-till seeding into terminated stand.

Seeding Rate

Pure Stand (Drilled)
15-20 lbs/ac
Pure Stand (Broadcast)
25-40 lbs/ac
In a Mix (Drilled)
10-15 lbs/ac
In a Mix (Broadcast)
15-20 lbs/ac

Planting Dates

3-6 weeks prior to the average first killing frost

Planting Map

Planting Depth

1/2-1 1/2"