Harvesting forage maize© Tim Scrivener

Good weather has allowed maize harvest to progress in all areas of the country, with high yields being reported.

Toby Tibbenham, sampling for Farmers Weekly near Harleston on the Suffolk/Norfolk border, has finished harvesting in excellent field conditions.

Further north in Dumfries, Hugh McClymont is also contemplating harvest. “Our summer up here has been damp at best and the season is two to three weeks later than last year. We have chopped all the early-drilled maize that was sown under film, and where we used an ultra-early variety, we have established grass seeds ready for Scotgrass next spring,” he adds.

See also: View last week’s Maize Watch results

Mr McClymont has some maize still to harvest that was drilled after first-cut silage on 10 May, which he hopes to chop mid-November. “Since we rarely get a frost here close to the Solway Firth, the crop will continue to lay down starch in the grains and improve in quality,” he adds.

Grainseed technical director Neil Groom says once the crop is ensiled it is important to keep it sealed down for six weeks to enable the silage to stabilise.

“This will ensure the best silage is produced. Once you open the pit up, sample once a month because the starch becomes more available to the cow over the course of the winter and rations need adjusting accordingly,” he adds.