Sowing a pressing concern

Combines are still at a standstill across much of the country, and growers are becoming more concerned about the impact on next season’s crops.

Ben Atkinson was about 75% of the way through his wheat in Lincs, and quality was starting to fall, with heads dropping and grain shedding.

He had drilled almost half of his rape, but conditions were now too wet to continue. “With input costs as they are there is no room for second rate crops.”

John Hutcheson was equally concerned in Fife, where he was finishing off spring barley today (11 September).

“The big issue is next year’s cropping – we are starting to fall behind and prices are downhill all the way.”

Derek Lamplough was halfway through his wheat at Manor Farm, Scarborough, Yorkshire, and had not cut anything for over a week.

“There is a lot to do in the area, and it all wants doing now, but the forecast isn’t good.”

In Berkshire Nigel Horne still had over 160ha (400 acres) of combining to do. “Everything is still standing – it doesn’t look too bad,” he said.

The wheat cut so far had yielded above average, and spring barley had also been pleasing.

Yields had been phenomenal at Richard Solari’s Heath House Farm, Beckbury, Shrops. “They’re the best crops we’ve ever had.”

And despite 135mm of rain falling in the first 11 days of September, the remaining crops were still standing, he said.

“We have already combined more tonnes than we ever cut last year, so even if we had to plough the rest of it in we’ve done well.”


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Duxford winter wheat is an HGCA Recommended List 2008/09 variety with very high UK treated yields and the top score for resistance to lodging with PGR. Combined with an unbeaten second wheat yield and a balanced disease resistance profile, this new variety from Syngenta Seeds will help UK growers rise to the challenge of producing more grain profitably.


See the New Farm Crops website.



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