Farmer Focus: Rain arrives too late for cereal crops

Well it rained, with the week in mid-June providing us with 69mm, of which 32mm arrived in one hour – and the majority of that came in 15 minutes. That takes us to 83mm in June so far.

I feel the rain has come too late for both the winter and spring combinable crops but it has benefited the grass and the summer cover crops. Sunshine, for our crops, will now contribute the most to grain fill and yield.

All of our spring crops are rather short, especially our spring oats which could have managed without the PGR, but after harvesting 60ha of flat oats last year these will be a breeze.

See also: Demand for healthy fish and chip oil sees premium for OSR growers

Harvest preparations are under way and its great to hear of so many taking the trailer safety initiative seriously.

This year in preparation for harvest we have carried out some alterations to a large existing building that was not being used to its full potential. The addition of shutter walls will give us some much-needed storage capacity for multiple crops.

Through the coronavirus pandemic I feel the way information and knowledge transfer has been available to us through the use of webinars and podcasts is a real positive and something that could be more useful to us going forward.

I am also proud to be announced as one quarter of the four new hosts of the Hereford AHDB Monitor Farm program.

This is a new dynamic to the program, with four of us being joint hosts, but with all of us having a very similar outlook on how we would like to develop a farming system fit for the future. Exciting times are ahead.

We have a lot to live up to, as Russell Price and Martin Williams have done such a fantastic job with the program over the past three years.