Late start a bit ominous

“Everything‘s amazingly late this year. We‘re still ten days away from barley harvest.”

The crop “looks OK” and has stayed standing well, which Mr Smith, who claims to be on the driest farm in Britain, puts down to late emergence.

“Due to the dry autumn nothing came up until mid November. We don‘t have any oilseed rape at all.”

His wheat crop – 243ha (600 acres) of Xi19, Access and Hereward – also looks good, but an anticipated late harvest means Mr Smith has had to change his marketing plans.

“Normally I harvest the wheat in the last week of July to catch the premiums on the early market. But I‘ll have to keep it back this year.

“It‘s all a bit ominous that we‘ve lost two weeks,” he commented. “We may find it difficult to get it back again.”