Maitland Conservation’s Cover Crop Leaders Program
PLEASE NOTE – this program is now fully allocated and new applications are not being accepted at this time. We’ve left the program outline posted below for information purposes.
Maitland Conservation has launched a Cover Crop Leaders Program open to all farmers in MVCA’s watersheds. The program offers a $15/ac incentive (max 150 acres) to farmers who are experimenting with cover crops in combination with reduced tillage techniques. In addition to the incentive, MVCA will coordinate technical support for farmers adopting new practices by offering workshops addressing specific practices farmers are interested in (e.g., cereal rye after corn). The program will run until spring 2024.
Cover crops offer multiple benefits including helping to prevent soil erosion and protecting water quality. The program aims to support farmers who are taking steps to incorporate cover crops for the first time or improve their existing systems.
2022 Program Requirements
Performance Incentive: $15/acre/year – two year commitment
Maximum Payment: $2,250/year – maximum 150 acres per farm business
- Two year commitment to using cover crops within the operation (2022 and 2023)
- Must be experimenting with new cover crop mixes or techniques
- Cover crop established and residue left over winter
- No aggressive full width tillage used in the crop rotation
- Must be willing to share their experience with others by participating in outreach
- Must be willing to have temporary signs installed if fields are visible from road
Priority will be given to:
- Applicants who are minimizing soil disturbance and maintaining residue cover throughout their rotation
- Projects that are more likely to sequester carbon
Other Eligibility Criteria:
- Funding cannot be combined with other federal sources of funding.
- Funding can be combined with the Huron Clean Water Project incentive
- Applicants must disclose other sources of funding as this may impact eligibility.
- Max 150 acres per operation
- Winter wheat is not eligible as a cover crop
If your application is approved:
- Maitland Conservation staff will visit the fields in the Fall to verify the cover crop was established, and then again in the spring to verify the land management practices. Incentive payments will be issued in April.
- Staff will collect soil samples from your site to measure soil organic matter.
- MVCA may install signs at your field to promote the program.
- You will be asked to share your knowledge with peers either on social media, at a tour, or a presentation.
- Want advice on your cover cropping approach? Maitland Conservation will connect you with certified crop advisors, agronomists or peers who can help.
Stay tuned for updates on:
- Cover Crop Tours
- Technical advice from CCA’s and Agronomists
- Program highlights
Need inspiration? Check out some examples from 2021:
Bill Roy, a local landowner, recently spoke with Maitland Conservation staff about his experiences with cover crops. Click the image below to see the article.
This project was undertaken with the financial support of the Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund, a Government of Canada’s Department of Environment and Climate Change program in partnership with Conservation Ontario.