Maintained ground cover
Ground cover describes the material that covers the surface of the soil. It includes native vegetation, crop stubble, pasture, weeds, leaf litter, rocks and logs. Ground cover is important for protecting the soil surface from raindrop impact, reducing runoff and soil erosion and enhancing water infiltration. The condition of the ground cover has implications for flora and fauna habitat, ecological processes and soil condition.
Suggested indicator: Ground cover
Maintained ground cover may be associated with:
|Potential associated impacts||Suggested indicators+|
|Changed vegetation condition and composition|
|Increased fuel load leading to higher intensity fires||
|Increased quality and quantity of soil organic matter||
|Changed infiltration/flow that may alter watertable levels||
|Increased potential for gain of soil nutrients||
|Decreased potential for soil erosion||
+ Descriptions of indicators (PDF, 76K)* provides a brief description of each indicator including techniques and purpose.
* Requires Adobe Reader
Last updated 7 September 2010