Harvest flurry in late February

A farmer has salvaged 15t of spring beans after harvesting the crops six months later than planned.

The beans were sown last spring at John Yeomans’ farm in Clifton-Upon-Teme in Worcestershire, with two failed attempts to cut them in the soggy autumn.

The crop had still been too wet to cut over the winter, but after a dry, frosty spell, the crop was finally harvested last weekend.

Farm contractor Phil Richards, of Upper Sapey, Clifton-upon-Teme, used a New Holland TX 65 combine with wide Terra Tyres to travel on the soft ground and finish the job.

The beans were not tested for quality, and yields were unknown, but the crop will be sold for animal feed.

“It was just a question of salvaging as much as they could,” said local resident Susan Morgan, who pictured the combine in action.

“I’ve never heard of anybody who has harvested beans this late.”
Becky Ward, PGRO

“A lot of the crop yields had dropped after all this time and some of the crop was knocked down, but they still managed to get 15t from 8ha of the crop.”

Becky Ward, principal technical officer at the Processor and Growers’ Research Organisation (PGRO), said it was very unusual for anybody to be harvesting beans so late.

“I’ve never heard of anybody who has harvested beans this late,” she said.

“We did have some late-harvested crops at the end of November last year, which was quite unusual in itself.

“It is likely that crop quality would have been affected through the winter, but spring beans on the whole were fairly good quality last year.”

Elsewhere, farmer Tony Evans was baling straw in Prees, Shropshire at the weekend.

Bailing straw

And Bruce Minett was harvesting linseed in Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, at a “finger-numbingly cold” -1.5C, following “two big dumps of snow”.

Harvesting linseed

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