Thursday, 22 August 2013
A pause in the sunny weather has allowed me a few moments to gather my thoughts and get writing on the blog again. It seems a long time since the last update, sent to you from Mexico City! After returning from my Nuffield studies there was an distinct silence around the farm, no harvesting! I had planned to have a week at home before our usual kick off harvest start date, around the 25th July but this year we didn't actually start in July at all! That seems like an age ago already! We started harvesting oilseed rape (1st of August-latest ever) which didn't yield particularly well although I am not surprised after spinning the seeds into the wheat before we actually harvested the crop. Casting my mind back it was the only way to get any sort of crop established on those fields as they were so wet.
After a stop-start time on the oilseed rape we moved onto the winter barley crop designed for the Shobnall Maltings at Burton-upon-Trent, part of our Molson Coors commitment. All of the winter barley has been accepted (eventually) and the space in the grain store cleared ready for wheat when we get going. Yields on the barley were acceptable, again considering how they looked in the winter. I remember our LEAF (linking Environment and Farming) Demonstration Farm launch in October and the barley hadn't even emerged!
We've also harvested some wheat, the yields of which have been mixed; some doing very well, again off the better land. Right now we are having a short intermission due to rain early this morning so it's sorting out some maintenance around the machinery and grain store and getting ready for the next warm windy weather so that we can carry on with the next leg of the harvest. Do keep up to date with my Harvest Logs on YouTube where you will find a daily update of our progress.