In this page
The aim of this requirement is to minimise soil erosion by requiring a minimum soil cover.
You must protect soil by having a minimum soil cover (crop, stubble, residue or other vegetation) except where establishing a cover would conflict with requirements under GAEC 5.
To comply with requirements where land has been harvested with a combine harvester, forage harvester or mower, one of the following conditions should be met at all times, between the day after harvest to the 1 March:
- the stubble of the harvested crop remains in the land
- the land is prepared as a seedbed within 14 days for a crop and the crop is sown within a period of 10 days, beginning with the day after final seedbed preparation
When ploughing Grassland, the land must be prepared as a seedbed within 14 days from ploughing with the crop/grass sown within a period of 10 days, beginning with the day after final seedbed preparation.
N.B. If sowing within that 10-day period would mean breaching the requirement in GAEC 5, the crop or temporary cover crop should be sown as soon as is practical after it ceases to be waterlogged.
- check there’s acceptable soil cover or determine that conditions have prevented compliance
- check soil does not run off down slopes or off site (field parcel)
- plan to achieve a soil cover on all areas where harvesting takes place before winter
- leave the stubble of a harvested crop on the land
- prepare the soil for sowing a crop and sow the crop within 10 days of preparing the soil
- leave a 5 metre wide strip unploughed and uncultivated at the bottom of sloping fields, where soil erosion is likely (e.g. late harvested maize fields where a soil cover hasn’t been established over winter)