Pearl barley harvest is complete for Norfolk farmer Robert More, but he has major worries for wheat potential.

“We’ve cut 45ha and yields are down about 10% on last year, so slightly below average overall for us at about 7.5t/ha,” he explained.

Quality was also down he said. “Bushel weight is about 71kh/hl, and nitrogens at 1.7 – a bit up on last year.”

Mr More was expecting to start wheat harvest in about a week’s time.

“Some of the wheats started dieing off in June, even the first wheats on good land which is quite concerning. I have major concerns for wheat.”

Mr More is growing a number of wheat varieties including Mascot which he says appears not to have been as affected by the drought. “I’d be interested to know if anyone else has had a similar experience.”

While he had no spring barley on his own farm, Mr More said quiet a few crops in the area were looking stressed.

Vining pea yields on the farm were well down “about 65% of last year, and last year wasn’t anything special”.

“We haven’t bypassed any crops but some have been very high tenderometer readings – we’re lucky we have processor that will take peas at high TRs.”

Sugar beet on the lighter land had been flagging, he confirmed. “The potential is well down on last year. They’ve just shut down in the hot weather.”

Silver Y moth had been a problem in the area. “We had to spray the whole crop about a week ago. Some crops bafflingly don’t seem to be affected but certainly all mine and my neighbours’ have been.”

Crop: Barley
Variety: Pearl
Yield: 7.5t/ha (below ave)
Area: 45ha
Quality: 1.7N; 71kg/hl