I recently attended the first day of Suffolk Show, where there was a great air of expectation about high yields and good prices, with many of the machinery dealers exhibiting the latest additions to their ranges and offering demonstrations of almost everything I enquired about.
The only negatives were what the politicians are up to, slowly recovering sugar beet crops and a hope that the rain will stop now, so we can all get our ear washes done and keep these very lush, good-looking crops standing up. On the whole, it was a good day out, but being as unprepared as ever, I did get wet walking to the car. What happened to all the umbrellas I have picked up at Cereals events over the years?
We are due to take delivery of our second tractor that is to be fully kitted out with GPS, a John Deere 7260R from Ben Burgess. This will mean all our land work will now be carried out with no overlaps, which will make the operator’s life a bit easier when the long days of harvest and autumn are here. With fuel and steel prices where they are I found it very easy to justify this extra expenditure, and I really do believe it should no longer be an option on larger tractors and priced in accordingly. With all the emissions issues with the engines, they should be selling tractors to operate at their most efficient as well.
Another far more important addition to the team is Treble, my new Springer pup and hopefully gundog-to-be. She is 10 weeks old now and causing havoc where ever she goes, but really is a wonderful little dog and great fun to have. Field walking will now have a new emphasis with training her and keeping an eye on the crops. Happy days ahead.
Richard Cobbald is farm manager for West Wratting Park Estate near Cambridge. The 1,300ha of heavy soils grow wheat, oilseed rape, sugar beet and spring barley.