Finishing up near Cropwell Butler

Chris Cockayne hopes to finish combining at Top Brackendale Farm, Cropwell Butler, Nottinghamshire, today (15 August).

Although the weather had been relatively good over harvest, the dry spring had really knocked yields, he said.

“The yields are very variable, so are hard to average. They’re better than we’d thought before we started combining, but it’s not going to be a barn busting year.”

Moisture contents varied from 14.4% to 15%, he said. “That’s excellent.”

But protein contents in the Gallant and Einstein were low, at 10-11%. “That is disappointing. Other than that, the samples are good and bold.”

Tipple spring barley had been the most disappointing crop, having suffered badly in the drought, he added.

“We only had 9.5mm of rain in March and April respectively – would should have had another 50mm per month. The only saving grace was 40mm in May.

“The yield wasn’t as bad as we’d expected but didn’t reach its full potential.”

Oilseed rape yields for NIAB trials had been slightly above average. “We were satisfied, but we wouldn’t have made 5t/ha (2t/acre).”

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