A dry, mild winter has resulted in ideal conditions for drilling on some soils and arable farmers are not wasting the opportunity get their beans and barley in the ground as well as some early fertiliser.
Yesterday (21 February) saw the warmest February day ever in Scotland with a temperature of 18.3C in Aberdeenshire.
It is a far cry from last year when drills were still locked firmly in the shed as the Beast from the East arrived on this day (22 February) last year.
Agronomist Eddie Pissarro who looks after crops Essex/Suffolk can’t believe it is February, given the dry conditions.
It’s bloody February!!! Whaaaat pic.twitter.com/66wl00OweP
— Eddie Pissarro (@EddiePisso) February 21, 2019
Likewise, Phil Burrell says it is “almost unreal conditions for spring barley drilling on marsh land in February”.
Almost unreal conditions for spring barley drilling on marsh land in February pic.twitter.com/ljj9Qh03K5
— Phil Burrell (@cricketandcrops) February 21, 2019
Spring barley drilling is also underway for Michael Balls in Suffolk who is hoping for a kind March.
Spring barley going in well, let’s hope early March is kind to us pic.twitter.com/syZQhA6yGu
— Michael Balls (@Michaelballs77) February 21, 2019
David Walston is applying liquid fertiliser to spring barley in Cambridgeshire that is looking great in the sun (if you ignore the hare coursing tracks).
Spring barley looking great in the sun (if you ignore hare coursing tracks). @HORSCHUK Leeb performing flawlessly at 25kph, 200l/ha at 2bar, 60ha/hr. Time to spare for Twitter. pic.twitter.com/h7Buo8hWhG
— David Walston (@OOOfarmer) February 21, 2019
Somerset farmer Richard Payne is drilling beans and says they are sitting in a lovely crumb 3in down, following cover crop grazed off by sheep.
In for a penny, in for a pound. Zero-ish till beans going in at Heathfield. A touch sticky on top, but the beans are sitting in a lovely crumb, 3” down. This is following four different cover crops, all grazed off by sheep. @AHDB_Cereals @BourgaultVos @agronomyjohn @AgriiUK pic.twitter.com/PflJKjAMWg
— Richard Payne (@richardpayne94) February 21, 2019
Further north near Stokesley, North Yorkshire, beans are being variably drilled into perfect seed-beds.
— SOYL precision (@SOYLprecision) February 21, 2019
Over in Wiltshire, Roger Wilson is applying the first split of nitrogen to his winter barley.
— Roger Wilson (@loweroddfarm) February 20, 2019
And finally, the mild weather brings the inevitable fog and autosteer is proving to be valuable for James Alexander drilling spring barley in Oxfordshire while being unable to see the other end of the field.
— James Alexander (@FarmerJamesPA) February 22, 2019