Reasonable harvest at Hampton Bishop

Jamie Rogers has had a reasonable harvest at White Hall Farm, Hampton Bishop, Hereford, considering the poor start to the season.

“Considering how wet the winter was, I’ve got to be pretty satisfied,” he said. “We redrilled 20ha of winter wheat, but then the spring wheat couldn’t take the rain in May, so we’ll be lucky to get 2.5t/ha off that.”

Mr Rogers was halfway through combining his winter wheat, and so far yields had averaged 8.6-9.4t/ha. “We had a good few days on Thursday, Friday and Saturday last week, but haven’t cut anything since then,” he added.

“We had a fierce burst of rain today (12 August) so that will probably stop us for another 24 hours at least.”

See also: Straw fire adds to Shropshire farm blaze toll.

The remaining 61ha of Santiago, Diego and Conqueror winter wheat was fit and ready to go, and would be followed by 32ha of spring wheat.

“We’ve cut about two-thirds at over 16.5% moisture so have had to dry a bit, but I’d much prefer that and have it in the barn,” said Mr Rogers.

“We’ve also managed to bale everything directly behind the combine with a round baler. Round bales can stand the weather much better than square bales, so it’s a pressure off the mind.”

PR46W21 and Cabernet oilseed rape had performed pretty well, at 3.6t/ha, said Mr Rogers. “Considering how low lying and flat that land is, I’m pretty pleased. But the better drained sites yielded better.”

Having cleared the wheat fields destined for oilseed rape, he planned to start discing the ground tomorrow. “We won’t drill until after the Bank Holiday, so it will be first time in 10 years that we’ll get a pre-drill weed chit, which is good news.”

The only downside was the price of the crops, he added. “I’m doing everything I can to avoid spending at the moment and having to sell at these prices. By hook or by crook I intend to be in business this time next year.”

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