Harvest 09: Red alert in Cork

Harvest is only 50-60% through in Co.Cork, Ireland, where crops have started to sprout and fall over.

Nicholas Dunican of Cork Combines, Valley Farm, Belgooley, said he had only managed one day’s harvesting over the past three weeks, with conditions even worse than last year.

“The wheat is starting to sprout and there are no standing crops of spring barley. The quality of the wheat has gone beyond salvage for crimping.”

Winter barley straw was still in the field six to seven weeks after combining, and was starting to turn green again

“Over 50% of the spring barley is still to be cut in south Cork and the Munster region. But if we had a dry week things wouldn’t look so bad.”

Some spring barley which was cut early had made malting, but other crops that were left had lost 25% of their heads, he said.

Mr Dunican had measured 7.5” of rain in August and 2.5” so far in September. “Everyone who has finished is on red alert to help their neighbours.”

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