Heavy rain was preventing combines from rolling today (5 September), and those with crops left to get in were increasingly frustrated.
James Chamberlain had got at least three good days of harvesting to go at Glebe Farm, Derbyshire, and was getting concerned about milling wheat quality.
“We have had rain every day this week,” he said. “The wheat is all standing but it’s difficult to think it’s going to hang onto its Hagberg when it does nothing but rain.”
James Stafford had got 40ha (100 acres) of wheat to finish at Pickwick Lodge Farm, Corsham, Wilts, and was desperate to get on drilling as well.
“We can’t drill any oilseed rape because the ground is just sodden,” he said. The wheat cut so far had performed well, with average yields of about 8.9t/ha (3.6t/acre).
“The dryer seems to be running all the time and there’s plenty of grain in front of it.”
Spring barley was yielding well at MC Thomson & Sons’ farm in Clochan, Buckie, Scotland, but harvest progress was frustrating.
“It’s very slow – stop, start – it’s just been desperate,” said Frank Thomson. “The quality is still there at the moment but we really need to get on now.”
Further south, in Lincolnshire, Jonathan Booth had finished harvest, and was thrilled with his wheat yields.
“We’re very pleased with the wheat – we’ve never had so much. The sheds are just full of wet wheat.”
He was now trying to drill oilseed rape. “We ended up broadcasting some yesterday because it has been so wet.”
Robert Shove had also finished harvest at Lillechurch Farm, Lower Higham, Kent, and was pleased with both yields and quality.
Yields ranged from 9.7-11t/ha (3.9-4.5t/acre), and proteins were mostly over 13%, he said.
He was busy drilling rape today before the next bout of rain arrived.
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Duxford winter wheat is an HGCA Recommended List 2008/09 variety with very high
See the New Farm Crops website.