Irrigating pays off at Thornham

Stephen Betts has finished harvest at Thornham Farms, Thornham, Norfolk, and is pleased with yields despite the dry spring.

“We irrigated all of our wheat and barley – if we hadn’t, we wouldn’t have got anything like the yields we did.”

Cabernet oilseed rape yielded 3-3.7t/ha (1.25-1.5t/acre), with Tipple spring barley coming off at 5.6-6.2t/ha (2.25-2.5t/acre).

“It was 1.58-1.9% nitrogen, so I’m quite pleased.”

Duxford winter wheat averaged about 7.4-8t/ha (3-3.25t/acre), with very good bushelweights, he said.

“Most people have finished harvest in the area; if they didn’t irrigate then yields were very poor, especially on light land after sugar beet.

“Earlier drilled crops on better soil didn’t do as badly.”

Mr Betts said his sugar beet looked excellent, and ground conditions were ideal for autumn cultivations.

Crop: Oilseed rape
Variety: Cabernet
Yield: 3-3.7t/ha (1.25-1.5t/acre)

Crop: Spring barley
Variety: Tipple
Yield: 5.6-6.2t/ha (2.25-2.5t/acre)

Crop: Winter wheat
Variety: Duxford
Area: 120ha (300 acres)
Yield: 7.4-8t/ha (3-3.25t/acre)

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