Spanish Study Site experiment video


Farmer Phil front cover



Italian farm advisor 


Swiss farmers











Soil cultivation cover

Soil cultivation cover2 Soil cultivation cover3 Soil cultivation cover4 Soil cultivation cover5


5 short videos on good practices in soil cultivation when preparing soil after grassland before maize sowing


The SoilCare project has produced the following guidance leaflets to help farmers with their journey to soil-improving cropping systems



10 steps to SICS front cover

  French soil guide cover  
     10 common practices and their harmful impact on soil     10 Steps to Soil-improving cropping systems (SICS)     

Adapter ses pratiques a la nature de son sol

  (available in French only).




 Available in FrenchSpanishGreekPolish, German and English.     Available in French, GermanEstonian and Spanish     





Soil pollution frontcover     SoilCare compaction factsheet 2   SoilCare waterlogging factsheet 2  
Factsheet exploring the practices which are likely to reduce or alleviate soil pollution and contamination.   Factsheet exploring the cropping systems which can reduce soil erosion   Factsheet exploring the cropping systems which can reduce soil compaction   Factsheet exploring the cropping systems which can prevent waterlogging  
Available in French, German and Spanish.   Available in French, German and Spanish.     Available in French, German and Spanish   Available in French, German, and Spanish  
 Factsheet exploring the cropping systems which can increase soil biodiversity    Factsheet exploring the cropping systems which can prevent flooding    Factsheet outlining the SICS which can increase soil organic matter      
 Available in French, German and Spanish.     Available in French, German and Spanish.     Available in French, German and Spanish      

Farmers who adopt zero tillage (or 'no-till') use direct drilling to sow seeds into the soil without ploughing it. Whilst zero tillage, in combination with mulching/retention of stubbles, can reduce soil erosion, it can also increase the reliance of herbicides for pest control. 

The following table provides some resources which may be useful to farmers considering whether to adopt zero tillage on their farms:

 Title  Country  Language  Format Description Organisation
No-till farming and how it can benefit soil and water   UK English  Webinar   Webinar about an Innovative Farmers' trial on no-till 

 Groundswell Agronomy - For Advice on Regenerative Agriculture Groundswell

Groundswell Agriculture

 Direct drilling: best-practice information sheet UK   English Factsheet   Factsheet about no-till and how to make it a success

The Rivers Trust - Wildlife and Countryside Link

The Rivers Trusts

 Benefits for soil and yield: direct drilling UK   English Video   Video of a farmer explaining his transition to a direct drilling system

Funding for Farmyards | Brightspace

Farm Herefordshire

 No-till 101 USA  English  Website   Information on no-till systems

No-Till Farmer's Summer Edition Highlights

No-till Farmer

What is no-till farming? EN N/A Article  Provides details of the no-till system and how it fits into the future

Why Regenerative Agriculture? - Regeneration International

Regeneration International

Zero-till/direct drilling EN UK Video  LEAF Video explaining zero till/direct drilling with a case study



Benefits for soil and yield with the direct-drilling approach EN UK Video  Provides a case study of a farmer's drastic change to a no-till system

 Funding for Farmyards | Brightspace

Farm Herefordshire

No-till: opportunities and challenges for cereal and oilseed growers EN UK Fact sheet  Contains pros and cons, along with key information about the system

Government response to AHDB request for views published - GOV.UK 


Agroecology Europe Forum – Focus on No-Till EN Europe Article  Provides thoughts of different European countries on no-till systems

 ARC Press Release | Agricultural and Rural Convention

 Arc 2020

Spreading the word about the no-till agricultural revolution EN Global Article/video  Shows how the no-till movement is progressing globally and a video containing general no-till information

International Institute for Environment and Development | Linking local  priorities and global challenges


Crop Rotations fertCrop rotations have been part of agricultural practice in Europe since the middle ages and are important in protecting the land against soil erosion, pathogen build-up and pressure from disease and weeds.  Crop rotations generally have a positive effect on soil functioning, compared to monocultures, which is mainly due to the suppression of soil-borne diseases and weed infestations. Crop rotations also tend to have a positive effect on soil structure and soil tilth, because of the diversity of rooting patterns and soil organic matter sources.  Root crops in crop rotations often have a negative effect on soil structure due to the disturbance of soil structure during harvesting and the low amounts of residual biomass left in the soil. This effect may be mitigated/restored again by a subsequent cereal crop or oilseed crops.  


General Principles for crop rotations:

From Building Soils for Better Crops (2000; Fred Magdoff and Harold van Es), chapter 11, “Crop Rotation,” pp. 102–3:

  • Follow a legume crop with a high nitrogen demanding crop
  • Grow less nitrogen demanding crops in the second or third year after a legume sod
  • Grow the same annual crop for only one year 
  • Don’t follow one crop with another closely related species
  • Use crop sequences that promote healthier crops
  • Use crop sequences that aid in controlling weeds
  • Use longer periods of perennial crops on sloping land
  • Try to grow a deep-rooted crop as part of the rotation
  • Grow some crops that will leave a significant amount of residue
  • When growing a wide mix of crops, try grouping into blocks according to the plant family, the timing of crops, (all early season crops together, for example), type of crop (root vs. fruit vs. leaf), or crops with similar cultural practices


The table below provides links to existing practical information on the use of cover crops in agriculture.   


 TitleLanguageCountry Format  Description Organisation
Crop Rotation: Practical Information EN Europe Video Video demonstrating why and how to design a good crop rotation Best4Soil logo
Tips for Sequencing Crops  EN  USA  Guidance document  A simple summary of steps to planning a crop rotation

 University of Vermont Named Regional SARE Host | University Communications  | The University of Vermont


Planning and Implementing Crop Rotations  EN  UK  Case study/video  Vlog format case study of Dayelsford Organics focusing on organic crop rotations

Agricology Podcast - Agricology | Listen Notes 


Rotations EN UK Guide Short overview of the decision of using rotations

Frontier Agriculture (@FrontierAg) | Twitter 

Frontier Ag

Arable Cropping & the Environment - a guide: Rotations EN UK Guide Provides how a well-planned crop rotation can benefit the farmer and also any risks

DEFRA - Kent & Essex IFCA


Organic Arable Productions: Crop Rotations EN UK Factsheet Provides an example of a 6 year organic rotation along with key details about crop rotations

The Soil Association Limited (SA) | LIAISON2020 

Soil Association

Crop Rotation Effects on Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition EN UK Article Details the basics surrounding nutrient release from different crops that can be used in rotations and the best crops to use dependant on different nutrient uptakes

University of Vermont Named Regional SARE Host | University Communications  | The University of Vermont 


Crop Rotation EN Europe Website Suggests accompanying EU Documentation and why certain crop rotations should be used

Low Impact Farming | PAN Europe

 Low impact farming

Redesigning cropping systems in three French regions EN France Case study Follows 3 different case studies in France with various current cropping systems used

The ENDURE Network – a major European collaboration in Integrated Pest  Mangement | The James Hutton Institute 

Endure Network

Integrated Crop Management: Crop Rotation EN UK Guide Covers a wide range of crop rotation details along with different crops and where their place should be in rotational planning

DEFRA - Kent & Essex IFCA


Crop Rotations and Crop Planning EN US Article Details information surrounding crop rotations and why it should be done

Central Maryland Research & Education Center - Extension | University of Maryland  Extension


Crop Rotation EN Europe Guide Focuses on the benefits to farmers, and crop rotation vs crop diversification along with CAP barriers to farmers

Friends of the Earth: Anti-nuclear group turned anti-technology activists |  Genetic Literacy Project 

FOE Europe

There are several soil-related problems that can be alleviated through well-managed trafficking, including soil erosion, compaction, SOM matter loss, biodiversity declines, salinization, flooding, and desertification.

Controlled trafficking can minimise risks of soil compaction and erosion by reducing the weight and/or frequency of machinery passing across the soil. 

Potential ways of managing trafficking include changing the size of machinery, adjusting tyre pressures, drilling across slopes, keeping equipment to headlands, adopting a controlled trafficking system, reducing tillage, and avoiding trafficking during wet periods.  

Further information about trafficking is available here:


  Title   Language Country   Type of resource Description of the resource   Organisation
A guide to cutting compaction (through managed trafficking)  EN UK  Online guide  Online guide exploring how controlled trafficking can reduce soil compaction

Soil and Water Management Centre

Controlled traffic farming: What is CTF and how to implement it on your farm  EN Australia  Video  Video explaining what CTF is and how to implement it

 Terrain NFM

How to crack down on costly soil compaction  EN UK  News article  News article on how to reduce soil compaction through better management of trafficking

Farmers Weekly's Sarah Alderton is set to freelance daily - ResponseSource

Farmers Weekly

Controlled traffic farming EN  Europe  Website Provides a comprehensive website for everything Controlled traffic based


Controlled traffic farming

Controlled Traffic Farming EN Australia Factsheet Details what CTF is and the pros and cons of the decision
4 growers share their experiences of controlled traffic farming EN UK Article Gives small detail on CTF and then gives 4 case studies of farms adopting it

Farmers Weekly's Sarah Alderton is set to freelance daily - ResponseSource

Farmers Weekly

'Controlled traffic' farming: Literature review and appraisal of potential use in the U.K. EN UK Article A review assessing different literature based on the impacts of soil compaction and CTF


Controlled Traffic Farming EN Australia Video Provides a comprehensive video about everything CTF

  VNTFA- Stripper front demonstration day at Werneth | The stubble project:  Victoria and Tasmania

Victorian No-till Farmers' Association

Controlled Traffic Farming EN UK Website/video Case study video of a farmer and his experiences | Dale Drills 

Dale Drills

Soil Compaction EN France Website Provides detail about how soil compaction is changed with CTF

SlyFrance – Stripcat 2 : The Striptill

 Sly France

Innovation Case: Controlled Traffic Farming in Spain ES Spain/Europe Video Shows the process of CTF as an overview

Smart AKIS - Smart Farming Network | Zenodo