The prohibited period when slurry spreading is not allowed on Irish farms will start next week.

From October 15, farmers are not allowed to spread slurry on their lands under the rules of the Nitrates Directive.

As the graph below shows the closed period remains enforced until January 12 in the south east, January 15 in the midlands and west and January 31 in northern counties.

Slurry is prohibited from being spread over the winter in Ireland so as to comply with the European Union’s Nitrates Directive.

The aim is to protect ground and surface water, including drinking water. The regulations also prohibit such application at any time of the year when the ground is frozen, waterlogged or heavy rain is forecast.

Key dates

slurry deadline

Meanwhile, the closed period for spreading farm yard manure starts on November 1.

Failure to comply with these guidelines could lead to farmers Basic Payments potentially being penalised.

Weather outlook

According to Met Eireann, there is a good deal of uncertainty associated with the outlook period of this weeks forecast.

Ex-hurricane Joaquin, currently in mid-Atlantic, will make its way eastwards towards Europe over the course of the next few days.

Met Eireann says the exact position of the centre of the storm later in the week will determine the weather over Ireland at the weekend.

Current indications suggest Friday will be mainly dry for much of the country, although cloud with rain and drizzle in parts of the west and southwest are possible.

However, Met Eireann says there is currently too much uncertainty associated with the track of the storm to make definitive statements regarding the weekend but the possibility of a windy episode on Saturday and into Sunday can not be ruled out at this point.