Under the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, the Green Low-carbon Environmental Scheme (GLAS) included planting new hedgerows as an option.
The GLAS scheme operated in three tranches, planting a new hedgerow was an option available in GLAS1.
Hedgerows option was very popular under GLAS1.
Hedgerow planting option was suspended under GLAS 2 & 3.
There are just under 49,119 active farmers participating in the GLAS scheme, almost 15% of these planted a new hedgerow as part of their GLAS plan.
The minimum length of a new hedgerow that can be planted under the GLAS specifications is 10m.
GLAS participants were paid €5/metre of new hedgerow planted for each year of the 5 years of the scheme, provided the hedgerow met the specifications set out in the terms and conditions of the scheme.
Note: new hedgerows have to be a few years old before they can be detected by imagery.
Where the Planting New Hedgerow action is taken on a farm boundary, the GLAS participant must ensure it is planted in such a manner that he/she has control of both sides of the new hedgerow and that he/she can maintain both sides of the new hedgerow. Note, where a fence has been erected under TAMS, the Planting of New Hedgerow Action cannot be planted inside of this fence.
Trees cannot be planted on Natura land.
Requirements from GLAS Specification
- Plant 6 plants per metre in a double row of whitethorn and/or blackthorn and/or holly by 31st March 2017.
- The minimum linear length that must be planted is 10 metres and this must be in a single continuous length.
- The maximum length for which GLAS funding is available is 200 metres per holding.
- The location and length (metres) must be identified on the LPIS parcel(s) and marked on the map submitted. The new hedge must be a standalone hedge and not placed against an existing hedgerow or stone wall.
- Plants must be purchased from registered producers or registered grower s – see below.
- All newly planted hedges whether planted in a grass or tillage field must be fenced off and protected from livestock, from the time the hedge is planted. However, where the newly planted hedgerow bounds a private laneway, public road or watercourse, fencing is not required on the laneway/road or water body side as long as the hedge is not being damaged by livestock. The fence must be stockproof and fit for purpose.
- Grass and other competing vegetation must be controlled.
- Plants must be trimmed over the course of the contract to ensure a dense hedgerow develops.
- Failed or dead plants must be replaced at the earliest possible planting opportunity.