Harvest under way between the showers

Harvest is under way in parts of the country, but heavy showers are preventing all but the keenest combine drivers from making a start.






If you want to be part of this year’s Harvest Highlights, please e-mail Olivia Cooper or call her on 01392 877 356.
In Berkshire, Colin Rayner started his barley harvest at Berkyn Manor Farm, Horton on 30 June, at 11% moisture – 14 days earlier than normal.


With 1012ha (2500 acres) to cut for himself and neighbours, he had bought a second combine – a new Claas Lexion 570 – in the hope of securing a summer holiday with his children; a dream which is quickly washing away.


The 81ha (200 acres) of Sequel had yielded a pleasing 8-9t/ha (3.2-3.6t/acre) with a nice bold sample but very little straw. That left another 162ha (400 acres) to do, he said.


On Friday (10 July) Mr Rayner also made a start on his Expert and Excalibur oilseed rape, planted on 16 September.


That, too, was pleasing at 4t/ha (1.6t/acre) with a decent sample. “We’re just cutting between the showers,” said Mr Rayner.


“We had 18mm of rain last night and have had showers every four hours. But we just have to get on, and are simply feeding the drier.


“We got more cut in the first two days than we have done since, but I did see two other combines cutting yesterday (14 July).”


Early fields of barley and rape had been cut in parts of the country, said traders, and a decent spell of dry weather would see the combines out in force next week.


But the forecast was not promising, with the Met Office expecting heavy rain across the country on Friday (17 July) and further unsettled weather for the next 10 days or so.



If you want to be part of this year’s Harvest Highlights, please e-mail Olivia Cooper or call her on 01392 877 356.

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