Troy Stuart has been rained off harvest just north of Exeter, Devon, so is moving the combine back to the home farm at Clyst St Mary this evening (24 July).

“We’ve had a tremendous thunderstorm, but it’s very localised, so while it’s raining on one side of the farm it’s dry on the other,” he said.

So far he had cut 24ha of Charger oilseed rape, which had yielded a pleasing 4.2t/ha, with 40ha of Harper on less good soil producing 3.6t/ha. “That’s still pretty good, considering.”

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Cabernet had managed to top them both, at 4.3t/ha across 24ha, so it was a good start all round, said Mr Stuart.

“We’ve also cut some Volume winter barley, which hasn’t gone over a weighbridge yet, but according to the combine it’s done 8.9t/ha, and it has a very good bushel weight.”

Although the seeds in the crops were dry, the straw was still green, so the combine driver was having to take things slowly, he added.

“We didn’t start harvest until Sunday, and the straw is having to be turned before you can bale it, but it’s very nice to be making progress this early.”