Harvest started 12 days late at Beech Tree Farm, Westonzoyland, Somerset, but Patrick and Sandra May have now finished winter barley and started on wheat.
“We finally started harvest at 7pm on Sunday 15 July, after only one dry day,” said Mrs May. “It was not a particularly good crop, because of all the wet weather we’ve had.”
The Siberia six-row barley, cut at 18.8% moisture, yielded a disappointing 5t/ha, 2.5t/ha lower than last year, with a bushelweight of just 59.7kg/hl.
“More rain was forecast overnight so our son Nick round baled the barley straw behind the combine, destined for a local dairy farmer who had a silage cut washed away by heavy rain recently,” said Mrs May.
“Sure enough, the next day it was pouring with rain again and the free draining sandy soil was soggy and slippery.”
Many people had only been able to make hay or silage from the headlands of their fields, as water was still lying in the middle, she added. “As soon as they leave the headland they just sink in.”
Mr May had now moved the 1979 New Holland 8060 combine into Gallant winter wheat.
“It’s nothing to shout about – the bushelweight is pretty low. The rest of it won’t be ready for another seven to 10 days.”
Crop: Winter barley