Harvest washout near Saltash

Half an inch of rain in the past two hours is causing serious problems at Jon Bond’s Trerule Farm, Saltash, Cornwall.

“We’re trying to stop the potato field that we finished harvesting this morning (25 August) from running down the road – it’s even washing out of stubble fields.”

Despite the torrential weather, contractor John Moss had managed to cut all bar 16ha (40 acres) of wheat at the farm. “He’s doing sterling work in extremely trying conditions.”

Maris Otter winter barley yielded just under 5t/ha (2t/acre) at 1.2-1.4% nitrogen, with Cabernet oilseed rape at 3.5t/ha (1.4t/acre).

“Where it was good, it was brilliant, at 5t/ha (2t/acre), but with our small fields it’s difficult to get it to average that.”

The best of the Diego winter wheat had done 10t/ha (4t/acre), but had probably averaged about 8.2t/ha (3.3t/acre), said Mr Bond.

“We’re pretty delighted with that, given the dry spring.”

Barrie red wheat only managed 2.5t/ha (1t/acre) on light land, but should attract a decent milling premium, he added.

“We’ve been trying to find a spring crop that we can put in after late grain maize. It was drilled in March and only had about half an inch of rain from then until mid-June.”

Mr Bond had managed to drill 60ha (150 acres) of oilseed rape between the showers. “But it’s too wet to get on the fields now.”

Crop: Winter barley
Variety: Maris Otter
Yield: <5t/ha (2t/acre)

Crop: Oilseed rape
Variety: Cabernet
Yield: 3.5t/ha (1.4t/acre)

Crop: Winter wheat
Variety: Diego
Area: 60ha (150 acres)
Yield; 8.2t/ha (3.3t/acre)

Crop: Spring wheat
Variety: Barrie
Yield: 2.5t/ha (1t/acre)

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