Know How / Barley / Land preparation

Seed-bed preparation on most soils needs to be done with as few cultivation passes as possible, so that costs are contained, weed numbers are reduced and soil moisture is retained. Discover how cultivations can help produce effective seed-beds for winter and spring barley crops and get advice on coping with different soil conditions

Case studies

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Why mixed farmer exited pigs to focus on agroecology cropping

Shropshire arable and pig farmer Harry Heath has begun a journey into the world of agroecology in the hope it will future-proof his business, having made the difficult decision to…


Why the SFI pilot added up for this Oxfordshire farm

Applying to be part of the Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) pilot made more financial sense for Oxfordshire farmer Ben Adams than entering a Mid Tier Countryside Stewardship (CS) agreement. After…


4 growers' methods of effective cover crop destruction

Cover crops are becoming a mainstream option for growers, but their effective removal is critical to get good spring crop establishment. Farmers Weekly speaks to four growers from across the…


Regenerative Agriculture: A Scots farmer's low risk approach

A gradual approach to adopting regenerative agriculture has allowed Scottish grower Jock McFarlane to reduce inputs and minimise his farming business’s exposure to risk. Having started seven years ago by…


How one Yorkshire direct-driller is tackling a drainage problem

While direct-drilling offers many benefits through reduced soil disturbance, effective drainage is essential for good crop establishment, especially in wetter winters like last season. Lightwater Farms, based near Ripon in…


Integrating beef unit on arable land - do the costs add up?

Peter Lord, farm manager at Norwood Farm, near Bath teamed up with the AHDB and Adas to convert the 290ha long-term arable farm into an integrated mixed farming enterprise. He…

Practical advice

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5 steps to introducing a no-till approach on arable farms

Farmer-led organisation Base-UK will be recommending a five-stage approach to adopting regenerative farming at Cereals, for growers looking to start their no-till journey. The five steps are: 1. Have a…


How to build a bioreactor to produce your own on-farm biology

Building biology on your farm doesn’t need to cost the earth, although it does require a level of patience. There is more than one way to increase microbial activity in…


Cover crops help cut fertiliser costs for barley grower

As fertiliser costs spiral, Hampshire arable grower Ian Margetts is looking to cut nitrogen applications on his spring malting barley by up to 15% this season, as a result of…


Regenerative agriculture: What to avoid and how to start

Farmers considering the move to a regenerative farming system must have a plan and introduce gradual changes, or there’s a danger that they will expose their businesses to an unacceptable…


Terminating cover crops - how to get it right

Timing is essential when terminating cover crops, go too soon and limit the amount of biomass accumulation and rooting, whereas leaving it too late on heavy land can lead to…


The Soil Health Scorecard: What it is and how to use it

A new way to quantify soil health allows farmers to measure any improvements over time, as well as identify potential problems that could be holding yields back. Until now there…


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How tests for additional available N can cut fertiliser use

A soil nitrogen (N) test that has been available for the past 20 years is in line to have its most successful season ever, not just because of sky-high fertiliser…


Advice on trimming fertiliser rates when prices are high

Growers looking to cut back on fertiliser rates next spring because of the high prices are being advised to take a field-by-field approach. Last year, fertiliser costs averaged about 65p/kg…


Regen farming data show variable costs cut by 18%

Latest results from the Groundswell benchmarking group show that everything is lower in a regenerative agriculture system, except for the all-important net margin. Variable costs are 18% lower, while labour…


6 companies offering carbon-based payments to arable farmers

From government-backed schemes to voluntary private markets, there has been an explosion of interest in developing carbon and additional ecosystem service credits that could provide a new income stream for…


How new carbon offset scheme for regenerative ag works

The first UK-certified soil carbon offsetting scheme is available to farmers who use regenerative agriculture practices, offering them a commercial opportunity worth up to £100/ha from sequestering carbon in their…


Will soil carbon be the next big crop for growers?

It feels like a perfect storm: the urgency of climate change, the global surge in interest in regenerative agricultural practices and the need for new income streams. They are all…


How the UK's first soil carbon mapping service works

The UK’s first carbon mapping service, capable of providing an accurate baseline measure of soil carbon levels, is now available to farmers. The technology, known as Terramap Carbon, will gauge…


Fermenting organic matter better for soil than composting

Fermenting organic matter in a similar way to ensiling grass, rather than composting waste, can lead to greater improvements in soil health while at the same time helping farmers to…


Tips on getting soils and rotations back on track

After one of the wettest winters on record, it could be assumed that UK arable soils will be in desperate need of first aid before the next cropping season begins.…


Video: High-pressure water tech aids direct drilling success

Replacing drill coulters with a high-pressure jet to open up the soil will not only improve germination, its inventors believe it can aid rooting by cracking compaction and aerating soils.…


Plough, min-till and no-till compared: year one

A major trial has been set up to find the most profitable and sustainable way to grow arable crops by comparing three different establishment systems over five years. Establishment systems…


Can arable farming and wildlife conservation work together?

Farming is coming under greater pressure to halt the decline in wildlife. A major government project hopes to provide some of the answers in coming years, by balancing greater diversity with…