Winter barley harvest is nearly complete at James Grant-Suttie’s Balgone Farms, North Berwick, East Lothian.


“Unusually for us, we’re amongst the early starters this year – there are not many combines going around us,” he said.

The 20ha (50 acres) of Cassata winter barley was yielding pretty well at a comfortable 8.4t/ha (3.4t/acre) – leaving 32ha (80 acres) to finish off.

“If we got a really good day today (30 July) we wouldn’t be far off finishing the barley, but rain is forecast for this afternoon.”

Volume feed barley, grown as a trial after malting barley was rejected last year, proved slightly disappointing, said Mr Grant-Suttie.

“I was probably a bit mean with the seed – I was advised to sow it at 100kg/ha, and it was just a bit thin on the ground.

“I had hoped for 9.9t/ha (4t/acre) but it was more like 8.9-9.4t/ha (3.6-3.8t/acre).

Oilseed rape was nearly ready to cut, and looked well, but spring barley and winter wheat were still some way off.

“There will be a big gap – the weather has been far more mixed these past three or four weeks, which has slowed everything down.

“The spring barley and wheat will probably come in mid-August, as usual.”


Crop: Winter barley
Variety: Cassata
Area: 20ha (50 acres)
Yield: 8.4t/ha (3.4t/acre)


Variety: Volume
Area: 10ha (25 acres)
Yield: 8.9-9.4t/ha (3.6-3.8t/acre)