Spring crops disappoint near Newbury

Richard and Tom Brown are both busy combining at Priors Farm, Newbury, Berkshire, but are disappointed with yields so far.

“We’ve cut 12ha of spring oats, which looked fantastic, but yielded terribly,” said Richard. “They barely did 5t/ha.”

Spring barley was also failing to meet expectations. “It’s a nice bold sample, but the combine meter says it’s only doing 5t/ha.

“I don’t know if the scales are wrong or not – I would hope it’s doing more than that, but it certainly won’t get anywhere near 7.4t/ha, which is what we’d normally expect.”

With the crop being so behind during the very hot weather in June, Mr Brown wondered if that had caused more damage than he had realised.

“I’ve heard some very mixed reports on wheat – any early crops on good soil have apparently done well, but on lighter land it’s been very bad.”

Mr Brown had another 60ha of spring barley to cut on a neighbour’s farm, and expected to move into his own wheat after that. “It won’t be too long now.”

Crop: Spring oats
Variety: Canyon
Area: 12ha
Yield: <5t/ha

Crop: Spring barley
Variety: Tipple
Area: 60ha
Yield: >5t/ha

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