The combine is unlikely to be out today (19 August) at Priors Farm, Newbury, Berkshire, after an inch of rain yesterday.


“It’s a beautiful day today, but it’s going to take a lot of drying out,” said George Brown. “I very much doubt we’ll be on combining today.”

So far he had cut half of the Alchemy winter wheat, which had yielded between 8.6t/ha and 9.4t/ha (3.5-3.8t/acre). “We’ve had to dry every tonne.”

Sesame oilseed rape had been excellent, averaging 4.8t/ha (1.93t/acre), while Husky spring oats came off at 6.4t/ha (2.6t/acre).

“The spring barley looks quite promising; we cut some organic barley at Sheepdrove, Lambourn, at over 4t/ha (2t/acre), which isn’t bad for organic.”

Triticale at Sheepdrove had yielded just under 4t/ha (2t/acre), with rye coming off at about 3.7t/ha (1.5t/acre).

Mr Brown had also cut oilseed rape on a couple of neighbouring farms, which had averaged 4.4-5t/ha (1.8-2t/acre).

“The oilseed rape has been exceptional this year.”

But the weather had been frustrating, with no combining possible for the past three days.

“We’ve just been catching the odd 8ha (20 acres) here and there between the showers.”


Crop: Winter wheat
Variety: Alchemy
Area: 34ha (84 acres)
Yield: 8.6-9.4t/ha (3.5-3.8t/acre)


Crop: Spring oats
Variety: Husky
Yield: 6.4t/ha (2.6t/acre)


Crop: Oilseed rape
Variety: Sesame
Area: 34ha (85 acres)
Yield: 4.8t/ha (1.93t/acre)


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