Hail damage takes it toll on oilseed rape

Recent heavy rain and hail storms meant oilseed rape yields were well down on normal for Dorset farmer Tim Harris.

Just 8ha (20 acres) of Bambin had been cut by last weekend, at a disappointing yield of 1t/acre, he said. “Normally we’d get at least 1.75t/acre and crops did look quite good this year, so we’d hoped for a bit more than this.”

Moisture contents were generally around 10.4-13.8%, but did reach 20.4% on one headland when the rain started to fall. “We’ve dried it all ourselves and have got plenty of drying capacity, which will pay for itself many times over this year.”

Where some of the seed that had been shed had germinated, it was already at the one true leaf stage, he added.

“I just hope for some dry weather to get the rest of the [120 acres] of oilseed rape done and move into the wheat which is getting fitter and fitter by the day. Nothing’s under water, but everything’s looking very dark.”

Mr Harris sent in this picture of the “marble sized” hail. If you’ve had any similar experiences, or want to share your harvest stories, then please contact us now.

Tim Harris hail










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