Light land’s a winner at Manor Farm

This year’s wet weather hasn’t suited many cereal crops – but William Cumber’s barley has performed exceptionally well at Manor Farm, Marcham, Oxfordshire.

“Our winter barley is on some of the most drought-prone sand imaginable,” he said.

“Last year’s yields were among the worst ever, but this year our worst field has done 7t/ha, with the best at 8.4t/ha.”

Sesame oilseed rape had also yielded well, apart from 6ha that was flooded for two weeks in May and failed completely.

“I’m not sure the combine meter is completely accurate, but I think the rest is running at between 3.5t/ha and 4t, which isn’t too bad.”

However, the 200ha of wheat did not look as impressive, he added.

“I don’t know what it’s going to be like, because, along with the rest of the country, it has been ravaged with fusarium.

“The Soissons, which is on light land and is about 10 days off, hasn’t been as badly affected as the rest – but the Cordiale, Humber and Scout just look horrible.

“That will ruin any hope of milling wheat quality, and any hope of yield.”


Crop: Winter barley
Variety: Cassia
Area: 40ha
Yield: 7-8.4t/ha


Crop: Oilseed rape
Variety: Sesame
Area: 60ha
Yield: 3.5-4t/ha


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