Perfect ground conditions are prompting south-west barometer Troy Stuart’s contractor clients to continue to drill more wheat.
“We’ve finished the home farm drilling but we’re still contract drilling.”
More and more wheat was going in the ground, with growers ploughing up set-aside and pasture to drill the crop, he reported.
“Conditions are perfect – it has been a very kind autumn, which has made up a bit for the summer. There was a bit of rain last week that slowed us down, but we’ve now had 10 days of dry and it is ideal.”
Forage maize harvesting was nearly completed, he said, while he had also made a start on grain maize harvesting on lighter land. “Yields are above average so far. We’d budget on 3t/acre dry weight, but the first block did over 3.6t/acre, so we’re pretty pleased.”
So far, around 92 ha (230 acres) of grain maize had been cut, with a further 200ha (500 acres) left to do. “Some of the other heavier ground is still a fair way off – it held on longer.”
Autumn spraying was up to date, he reported, with both pre- and post-emergence sprays applied to crops in some instances.
Slugs remained a problem on some fields, but he was now patch spreading slug pellets rather than doing whole fields. “We’re fire-fighting patches, but I’m hoping we got the worst over earlier.”
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