Early finish to harvest in Yorkshire

Andrew Gloag has just 65ha of wheat left to cut at Busby House Farm, Stokesley, North Yorkshire.

“A couple of fine days and we will finish, which is just exceptional for us up here,” he said.

“Wheats have been very good, barley disappointing and oilseed rape wasn’t as good as it looked.”

Excellium, Extrovert and Expower all yielded about 4.2t/ha after drying – significantly below the 5.4t/ha achieved in 2011.

“The pod set was phenomenal and the crop looked fantastic, so we had hoped that yields would be up there, but the seeds were just too small,” said Mr Gloag.

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Volume winter barley broke no records at 6.9-8.9t/ha, after having been drilled very late following the wet autumn. “When you’re min-tilling you have to get it in early, but we were still combining wheat on 22 September last year.”

However, wheat had yielded really well at an average of 9.9t/ha. “We had a couple of crops at 12.4t/ha – Kielder did very well with an intensive four-spray fungicide programme but Diego – the stalwart of the past five years – was disappointing,” said Mr Gloag.

“Unfortunately with the prices so low, even these yields are only just breaking even.”

Today (28 August), he was spraying off 234ha of spring beans, so they would not be cut for another couple of weeks. “They’ve looked fantastic all season, with good pod set, which is encouraging.”

In stark contrast to last year, Mr Gloag expected to have all his oilseed rape drilled up by tomorrow. “Some is already emerging, which is good news.”

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