Paul Phillips has finished harvesting winter barley at Broniarth Farm, Newtown, Powys, and is now waiting for combine parts before cutting oats and winter wheat.

“We’re just about on top of things – we’ve just been battling through between the showers and breakdowns,” he said.

So far had cut Suzuka and Saffron winter barley at between 14% and 20% moisture, which had yielded 5t/ha and 6.2t/ha, respectively.

“The Suzuka had brackled very badly – I think it would have made 6.2t/ha if it had stood up.

“It’s not going to be a record-breaking year for any crop, but it’s looking surprisingly well given the poor weather we’ve had.”

Having turned the straw a few times to dry out between the showers, Mr Phillips had finished baling, and had just started cutting winter wheat when the combine broke.

“We got about a quarter of a tonne of wheat, and then about the same of oats. We bought a newer Massey Ferguson combine this year, which has a 12-foot header.

“We still have the old one with a 10-foot header and they’re both out of action at the moment.

“Even with the little combine we were marking the ground, so I hate to think what some of the bigger combines are doing to the fields,” he added. “The tractor was sinking in while we were baling, too.

“I think the lights have been one of the most important parts on the combine this year, as we’ve just had to go when it’s dry in the evening.”

After the 6.4ha of oats and 13ha of wheat, Mr Phillips had 5.7ha of Tipple spring barley to cut.

“It was late drilled, so it’s probably three or four weeks away yet. We had to spray it twice for wild oats but it looks fine now.”


Crop: Winter barley
Variety: Suzuka
Area: 1.6ha
Yield: 5t/ha


Variety: Saffron
Area: 5.3ha
Yield: 6.2t/ha