Harvest 2017 video: OSR yields surprising 3.5t/ha in Oxfordshire

Oxfordshire grower Jonny Edwards is reporting encouraging oilseed rape yields this season, averaging 3.5t/ha after a desperately dry year.

He farms about 485ha on the edge of the Chilterns, 12 miles north of Reading, and is roughly halfway through his 85ha of Elgar oilseed rape.

The combine started cutting the crop on Friday (14 July) at 8.5% moisture, with yields on the lighter, chalky upland coming off at 3.2t/ha.

See also: Advice on establishing oilseed rape in challenging conditions

Once he moved on to more fertile silt land towards the River Thames this figure rose to 3.7t/ha, giving an overall weighbridge average yield of 3.5t/ha with about 40ha still to cut.

“We’ve had a dry season so we are happy with that, it’s about average for the farm so far but I expect yields to get better as we move over on to better ground,” says Mr Edwards.

“The chalk never lets us down as it hold a bit of moisture,” he adds.

Watch the video of the rapeseed harvest in action at Coldharbour Farm below.

Weather permitting, he expects to finish the rapeseed by the end of this week as wheat is rapidly turning a golden brown.

Based at Coldharbour Farm in Crowmarsh, the Edwards Partnership grows winter wheat, winter and spring barley, oilseed rape and winter beans.

Bazooka barley

Mr Edwards has also cut all 46ha of winter barley variety Bazooka, which has been grown for the first time this season and hit an average yield of  8.1t/ha.

He is also growing the Group 1 winter wheat variety Crusoe and Group 3 varieties Barrel and Claire, which is destined for local flour makers Wessex Mill.

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