Stop-start harvest in Umberleigh

Phil Daniels is waiting for more rain to pass at Bradbury Barton, Umberleigh, Devon, after heavy rain showers have led to stop-start progress on the combine.  

“We’ve been ahead of schedule over the past few weeks, with high yields and everything coming off fairly dry,” he said. 

The 40ha of Florentine winter barley yielded a pleasing 7.9t/ha. Westminster spring barley was also relatively pleasing at 7.4t/ha.

“The yields were good and it looked well right up to harvest. Unfortunately, the bad weather caused it to flatten which was slightly disappointing.”

See also: HSE farm safety tips when bale stacking.

Crop facts

  • Crop: Winter wheat
  • Variety: Alchemy
  • Area: 40ha
  • Yield: 10.8t/ha

Alchemy winter wheat was excellent for the farm at 10.8t/ha and in the sowing plans for next year.

“It’s always been reliable for us and again we’ve seen high yields and good quality straw,” Mr Daniels said. “We started cutting it on 25 July, which is a record early start for the farm.”

121ha of JB Diego was still left to cut and looked promising.

Mr Daniels noted that early establishment impacted on this year’s yields, with minimum tillage areas not performing quite as highly as conventionally drilled areas.

“Overall, we’ve seen good yields across the board. Everything’s been coming in below 15% moisture, with just the headlands put through the drier,” he said. “Straw and grain quality has been spot on which is ideal.

“We’re now back to a waiting game until the weather improves. As soon as it changes we can get the combine moving again and we’ll be over the final hurdle.”

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