cover crop  is a temporary vegetative cover that is grown to provide protection for the soil and the establishment of plants.  Many types of plants can be used as cover crops. Legumes and grasses (including cereals) are the most extensively used, but there is increasing interest in brassicas (such as rape, mustard, and forage radish) and continued interest in others, such as buckwheat.  The table below provides links to existing practical information on the use of cover crops in agriculture.   

This page is constantly under review, and its contents may change.  

 TitleLanguageCountry Format  Description Link
Cover Crops: A practical guide to soil and system improvement EN UK Guidance document Information on the selection and management of cover crop options


Opportunities for cover crops in conventional arable rotations EN UK Fact sheet UK AHDB Cereals and Oils document introducing cover crops and providing case studies.

A review of the benefits, optimal crop management practices and knowledge gaps associated with different cover crop species EN UK Report Comprehensive review of cover crops in the UK

 GREATsoils Videos/Webinars





AHDB website providing information in the form of videos.

Cover Crop: Farmer experiences

EN UK Real Life Case Studies These publications feature farmers talking about their experiences using cover crops (SoilCare Study Site)

Cover Crop Basics EN US Guidance document A Cover Crop Guide including information on understanding quality, seed cost, species information and performance as well as recipes for success
Conserving Water with Cover Crops EN  Germany  Article   Discussion on the consumption of water by cover crops
Boosting on-farm soil organic matter with cover/catch crops EN, IT, SP, PL   Fact sheet  Fact sheets from the EU SmartSOIL project

SmartSOIL_factsheet_cover-crops.pdf (EN)
SmartSOIL_factsheet_cover-crops-italian-final.pdf (IT)
SmartSOIL_factsheet_cover-crops-spanish-final.pdf (SP)
SmartSOIL_factsheet_cover-crops-polish-final.pdf (PL)


This page is constantly under review, and its contents may change.