Harvest hightlights: Harvest still pleasing most growers

Growers around the south and east have been pleased with results of harvest. Rain continues to disrupt progress for some, but farmers are generally seeing results better than they had originally expected.

Charlie Watson Smyth had finished harvest in Cornwall and was pleased with Deben winter wheat yielding 8.1t/ha (3.25t/ac), which he said was good for his farm. Quality was good and he was pleased with straw yields of 7.5t/ha (3t/ac).

“Down here the straw is worth more so we’re pleased with that.”

Giles Porter in Surrey had nearly finished cutting 720ha (1800ac) of winter wheat. Malacca was yielding 9.4t/ha (3.75t/ac) and Solstice at 9.75t/ha (3.9t/ac). The crop came in dry and he said quality and bushel weights were good. But he had been put on hold due to a rainstorm.

Wheat harvest “went better than expected this year considering the dry weather”, for Cambridgeshire farmer David Fountain. Bushel weights were “pleasantly surprising” in the late 70s kg/hl, and yields averaged 9.2t/ha (3.68t/ac), which was a little better than last year.

“Harvest was very much early this year, probably by a fortnight, but it didn’t affect the crops at all.”

Peter Fairs in Essex was 75-80% through harvest with 880ha (2200ac) of winter wheat performing above average. Solstice had yielded 9-9.5t/ha (3.6-3.8t/ac) with quality the best he had seen for years. All other varieties yielded similarly and 50% had been sold on contract.

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