FARMER FOCUS: Harvest well under way

Harvest is well under way, with high nitrogen spring barley being grown on contract for malting.

Yields have been variable, along with the amount of straw left in the bout. The moistures have been fair, around 17%, which saves on drying expenses, but nitrogen levels could have been higher to get the contract bonus.

 Uplift has been prompt so far and the rain has stayed away, allowing us to get all the straw baled. It’s just a waiting game until next month to find out what exactly we’re going to get for it.

The winter barley has been bruised and prop corned. It wasn’t the boldest crop, but weighed well and all will be used for feed. Part of the field was then disced and 20 acres of stubble turnips sown for sheep fodder.

Second-cut silage is all in and we have the first cut pit analysis back. The protein levels are looking much better than normal. For the first time we grew 20 acres of red clover, with the added bonus of no fertiliser having to be applied to the second cut.

We had the pleasure of hosting Kim, a young Limousin breeder from Northern Ireland, who won a work experience trip to Newhouse for the week. She had various different jobs while she was here. A new skill learned was dressing the Bluefaced Leicester sheep for the Perth Show where James, our youngest son, won his third young sheep handler’s trophy. Not bad for someone who says he hates sheep.

One item from the Highland show wish list has been the pickup. It was the salesman we spoke to at the show that got the deal, beating our local dealership by quite a bit. The money saved was used to purchase a second-hand quad for checking the cattle, hopefully saving the new vehicle from a few bumps.

The October Stirling bull sale entries have been completed, with two black Limousin bulls heading there, along with 10 heifers, three Charolais and seven Limousins – all of which need a fair bit of education before they get there, so that’s the post-harvest jobs sorted.

Bob and Kay Adam run 100 pedigree Limousin and Charolais cows on their 222ha family farm in Angus and rent a 728ha hill farm running 640 ewes and 30 suckler cows

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