Harvest rained off near Thirsk

Harvest has been rained off near Thirsk, Yorkshire, but winter wheat is still a few days away so is not coming to any harm, according to Guy Shelby.

So far he had cut all the oilseed rape and winter barley at his friend’s farm, as well as at home at Benningholme Grange, Beverley.

“We’re quite happy with the barley – we had Glacier at home that’s done 9.4t/ha, and some has done well over 9.9t/ha at Thirsk. There was so much straw coming out behind the combine that it was up to the tractor’s axles.”

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Cassia winter barley had weighed in at 72kg/hl, and a crop of Glacier that Mr Shelby had contract sown with his Mzuri strip till drill yielded a massive 11.85t/ha at 80kg/hl. “The farmer couldn’t believe it,” he said.

“We like to stick with the conventional varieties – we tried hybrids a couple of years ago and we had was a lot of straw and low bushel weight rubbish.”

Mr Shelby’s oilseed rape had been rather disappointing, averaging 4.2t/ha, and with the conventional varieties Camelot and Charger consistently outperforming the hybrids. “The yield’s not too bad, but I thought it would do at least 4.9t/ha,” he said.

Having rubbed out some winter wheat, he wasn’t convinced that yields would exciting. “The potential was there but septoria has just finished the crops off.

“That’s why we’re in for an early wheat harvest – the flag leaf went 10 days ago.”

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