Harvest wash out in Scotland

Torrential rain has brought harvest to a halt again in Scotland, where Martin Bridges has been unable to combine properly for almost a fortnight.

“We had 42mm at the weekend, and 24mm yesterday (10 August); the ground is really wet now, so I don’t know what’s going to happen when we do get back combining.”

Mr Bridges had finished combining winter barley at Moray Estates, Elgin, Morayshire, and was pleased with an average yield of about 7.4t/ha (3t/acre).

Volume yielded the best, at over 9.9t/ha (4t/acre) in places, with a specific weight of over 68kg/hl, while Element did 6.9-7.2t/ha (2.8-2.9t/acre) at best.

“Our oilseed rape is ready – it’s been sprayed off, with pod stick, for more than three weeks, but we just can’t get at it,” he said.

“I don’t think it’s coming to much harm yet; as soon as the rain stops it will dry out fairly quickly, so we might get into it tomorrow afternoon if it stays dry.”

Spring barley was likely to be later than normal, as it was still quite green. “The early sown barley suffered in the April drought, but the later sown stuff looks good.”

However, Mr Bridges had noticed some ear disease in both the spring barley and winter wheat following the wet weather.

“We’ve had almost a fortnight of being able to do almost nothing; and have only had a few days when the temperature has got above 18°C. It’s been a terrible summer – again.”

Crop: Winter barley
Varieties: Volume and Element
Yield: 7.4t/ha (3t/acre)

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