This prolonged period of rain-free time has gone on long enough now. Thinking rain was on its way, I cut 45ha of silage.


Then I had the slurry tower totally emptied of grit and accumulated sludge, and thinking it was going to rain again shortly, spread it all over the aftermath… There’s making decisions and there’s shooting yourself in the foot.

The spring reseeds are growing well, but again need moisture. We have put in a new break crop (from brassicas) by putting peas, barley and Italian ryegrass in. When they said it was a dry farm, I thought it was because there was only one pub nearby. Still the chicory and plantain mix we have put in with this year’s Matrix grass have popped up. I’ve worked on the theory that when all else fails, weeds will never let you down.

The cows are being moved to a newly grassed field deep in the woods – let’s hope they will remember their way back. The struggle will be getting water there, which will come in the form of high-volume ball valves and concrete troughs.

We started serving, on William and Kate’s wedding day and enlisted some local Kiwis to give us a hand – we figured everyone else would be watching the box. Some 162 synchronised heifers were served on day one. This is a good way of rounding up later born animals that would otherwise be later calving. When we have 100% cross bred we will use more natural methods.