John Best was combining oats at Acton House Farm, Poyntzpass, Co. Armagh, yesterday (23 August), and is pleased with yields so far.

“The weather has been mixed, but we’ve had a few good days,” he said. “We’ve been cutting Mascani winter oats at 7.6-7.9t/ha (3.1-3.2t/acre) on good ground.

“I’ve just got into the Balado, and I don’t think they’ll do so well.”

Farmers still had a lot of spring barley to cut in the area. “It isn’t really ready yet; normally you’d expect it to be ripe by now.

“The worst factor was the dull weather in June and July – although we had a lot of sun in May, when the rapeseed was flowering, which did that a lot of good.”

Excalibur had outyielded the Flash, with the farm averaging 5t/ha (2t/acre) for the first time ever, said Mr Best.

Winter barley harvest was almost complete in the area. “It seems to have done fairly well, at 7.4-8.6t/ha (3-3.5t/acre) around here.”

But very little wheat had been cut. “I burnt mine off so it will be ready to cut next week, so that I can get the oilseed rape in after it.

“It’s looking good – there’s a bit of fusarium in it, but I’d be fairly hopeful about yield.”

Crop: Winter oats
Variety: Mascani
Yield; 7.6-7.9t/ha (3.1-3.2t/acre)

Crop: Oilseed rape
Varieties: Excalibur and Flash
Yield: 5t/ha (2t/acre)

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