Leonard Morris

6 November 1998

Leonard Morris

Leonard Morris is tenant at

206ha (510-acre) White

House Farm, South Kyme

Fen, Lincoln. His heavy land

grows winter wheat and

oilseed rape and spring peas

and linseed. Lighter ground

is cropped with potatoes,

spring rape and linseed.

WHAT a month we have had since I last wrote. We have had only two days with no rainfall, and I have recorded 75mm (3in) so far in October. We are well behind with our work now and I have just ordered extra seed as I shall be increasing seed rates when we get drilling again.

The first half of the month was spent ploughing the heavy land, most of it in reasonable condition. Ground due to be drilled with wheat then had one pass with the Dynadrive to leave it in good condition, whatever the weather did.

Wheat drilled at the end of September looks well and has had 5.5kg/ha (4.9 lb/acre) of Draza (methiocarb). I also put Draza on the fields after peas and oilseed rape, before they were drilled, as there was a very large slug population present. Why is it slugs eat the wheat in a wheat field and leave rape volunteers, while in the rape fields they eat the rape and leave wheat volunteers?

The wet weather delays have allowed me to get a second kill of blackgrass in the problem fields, using Sting CT (glyphosate) at 2 litres/ha prior to drilling. Oct 18-22 we were busy spraying the oilseed rape with 0.5 litres/ha Fusilade (fluazifop-P-butyl) plus 0.5 litres/ha Partna (wetter) for volunteers and 0.25 litres/ha Cyperkill (cypermethrin) for flea beetle, as well as working land, drilling Consort wheat, and finally harvesting Linola.

Unfortunately everything came to a sticky end with continuous rain six hours earlier than forecast. That has left me with three hours drilling that is now like a pudding, a field that has only the headlands rolled, and half an hour of combining to do. Why cant the weather listen to the forecasters a bit more? We did get the Linola finished on Oct 25, but we need a lot of drying weather before the drilling will go again.

Early drilled wheat is doing well, but the rain intervened when Lincs grower Leonard Morris had just three hours drilling left. Extra seed is needed now.

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