Paul Pilkington of Gettern Mere farm, Halsall, Ormskirk, Lancashire said: “The Carat winter barley is now in.” It yielded about 6.5 t/ha which he thought OK for his light soils.

After six weeks of continual wet weather, weeds had re-grown through the ripened winter barley and grower Mr Pilkington said: “We couldn’t get on with the sprayer to apply pre-harvest Glyphosate.”

He eventually retrieved the crop from wet ground by using a set of second-hand dual wheels.  “Even with those fitted to the combine, in places we are dragging the back axle through the soft fen soils.

“We are hoping not to have any significant rain this side of mid-September.” The 130ha farm had already lost over 9ha of potatoes due to waterlogging, and inability to apply fungicides for blight control.

Spring barley would be next, followed by spring beans. Crops looked as good as last year, but in places still stood in pools of water.

Crop: Winter barley 
o Variety: Carat
o Yield: c 6.5 t/ha


*Harvest Highlights 2007 is sponsored by RAGT

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