Entry Level Stewardship (ELS) Handbook 2013 (NE349)
UPDATED in 2013
EG4 Cereals for whole-crop silage followed by overwintered stubble
230 points per ha

The benefit of this option is the provision of a seed source in the winter stubble and from the unripe grain. This is a 'rotational option'. This means that it can move around the farm within the normal arable rotation, but the same total hectarage must be maintained each year.

For this option, you must comply with the following:

  • No more than 5 ha of this option may be included in your application.
  • Sow a cereal (but not maize) crop in the autumn or spring.
  • Do not apply insecticides between 15 March and the following harvest.
  • Only the following herbicides can be applied to control problem grass and broad-leaved weeds:
    • for broad-leaved weeds, only use amidosulfuron, and only between 1 February and 31 March; and
    • for grass weeds, use the following active ingredients only: tri-allate, fenoxaprop-P-ethyl, dicloflopmethyl + fenoxaprop-P-ethyl, tralkoxydim, clodinafop-propargyl or pinoxaden. Not all herbicides are suitable for all cereal crops or for undersown crops. Always read the product label.
  • There are no restrictions on the use of fungicides or growth regulators.
  • Harvest as whole-crop silage.
  • Where the stubble is predominantly clean after harvest, a light surface cultivation can be made before the end of September (or within the first month following harvest if later) to encourage weed germination and loosen any surface compaction or capping. If the stubble is already weedy, do not cultivate.
  • In sloping fields, the tramlines, headlands and other areas of severe compaction should always be sub-soiled following harvest (except where there are archaeological features or when conditions are wet) to reduce the risk of run-off and erosion.
  • Do not apply any pesticides, fertilisers, manures (including manure heaps) or lime to the stubble.
  • Beneficial seed and nectar-producing plants, such as mustard, fodder radish or oilseed rape, can be broadcast or sown on small areas (no more than 0.5 ha per 10 ha stubble) in the autumn, to enhance feeding and foraging value. Do not cultivate areas at high risk of soil erosion and run-off as identified on your FER.
  • Do not top or graze the stubble.
  • Do not apply post-harvest herbicides.
  • From 15 February, the stubble can be returned to the farm rotation.
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