Alan Cook has almost finished harvest at Windwhistle Farm, Romsey, Hampshire, with just a little linseed left to cut.

“We’ve cut 40ha so far and it looks to be about average,” he said. However, a drizzly start today (1 September) meant the combine would not be out again in a hurry.

“One forecast says it’s going to be hot and dry this week, which is perfect for cutting linseed – but another says it’s going to be misty and drizzly, in which case we won’t be getting on at all.”

Extrovert oilseed rape had proven disappointing, yielding 3.7t/ha, said Mr Cook. “That’s probably a good average but it looked as it if would make 5t/ha.”

See also: Spray technique key to effective grass weed control.

Wheat had been above average, with both Santiago and Claire yielding about 9.9t/ha.

“The Santiago produced a disappointing sample, with some pinched grains – probably due to Septoria pressure. I had hoped it would out-yield the Claire but the yields were very similar,” he added.

Odyssey spring barley, however, produced a lovely sample and yielded just over 7.4t/ha. “We haven’t sold it yet so it hasn’t been weighed, but that’s a best estimate.”

Having cut some crops for other people, Mr Cook reckoned the harvest had been better than average all round, with the exception of oilseed rape.

“There’s not very much left to cut around here; a few cereals with some beans and linseed left to go. If it comes dry we should finish this week.”