Bruce Udale has finished harvesting oilseed rape at Eyton House Farm, Telford, Shropshire, and is making the most of an earlier start than anticipated.

“We had just over 60ha of Fighter, Compass and PR46W21, which averaged 4.5t/ha,” he said.

Having just finished the oilseed rape, it was an exceptionally early harvest at the farm. “In a normal year we would be starting to cut the oilseed rape about now; but with the excellent weather we’ve finished it already,” said Mr Udale.

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Crop facts

  • Crop: Oilseed rape
  • Varieties: Fighter, Compass and PR46W21
  • Area: 60ha
  • Yield: 4.5t/ha

“We’re about 10 days away from moving onto the winter wheat, which we wouldn’t usually start until the second week of August.”

Unfortunately, disease in the wheat was prolific this year, with septoria proving particularly bad.

“Although the weather is fantastic now, it’s clear we’ve suffered with septoria and take-all due to the wet weather early in the year,” he said.

“The first wheats appear to have suffered along with the second and third wheats, which was unexpected.

 “But all in all, it’s not been a bad year so far and we’re expecting reasonable yields going forward,” added Mr Udale.

“It’s just a shame the prices are so low and the wet start has led to more disease in the crops. The hot weather has arrived but it just wasn’t soon enough.”