Up and running as the campaign starts at last
Harvest finally got going
across the country this week
with winter barley, oilseed
rape, and even wheat. Our in
depth coverage brings you
progress reports from Lincs
to the South-west, starting
in East Anglia. Edited by
FINE weather earlier this week brought a welcome, if late, start to harvest for most.
Early indications are that oilseed rape yields are below par but barley is better with bold grain but low nitrogens.
"Some Pearl off chalk yielded 66cwt/acre. The sample is good with big bold grain, but nitrogen is only 1.45%," says Camgrains Philip Darke.
In Suffolk, at Tuddenham, Hugh Maddever says his harvest is 10 days later than normal, having started Regina on sand last week. "I did 50 acres. It came off at 15.5% moisture with a weighbridge yield of just over 2t/acre. The sample is a little thin."
At Fulbourn, near Cambridge, Robert Fison has cut Pearl barley. "I have done 50 out of 120 acres, which I guess did 65-66cwt/acre. That is about the same as last years Regina, but a lot better than the 55cwt/acre I used to get with Halcyon and Pipkin."
Oilseed rape has disappointed so far, with Harlow Agricultural Merchants reporting crops in Essex averaging just 2.5t/ha (1t/acre).
At Great Wigborough, David Lennoxs swathed Apex was not that bad, but still not up to scratch. "It came in at 11% moisture and yielded about 25cwt/acre – I normally expect 30."
But in Beds, near Silsoe, Richard ODell says Apex was about average. "It yielded 25-30cwt/acre. It would have been higher, but a lot was lost on the ground."
• Bold barley with low N.
• Yields variable.
• Early OSR disappointing.
• Less than 5% of barley and OSR cut as of Tuesday.
The pace of harvest picked up across East Anglia this week. At Rougham Estate Farms, Velcourts new Case 2388 Axial-flow chomped through 29ha (72 acres) of Regina on Monday but pulled out with 12ha (30 acres) to do on Tuesday afternoon to go into industrial OSR. "The pods are getting brittle. I am afraid it will start to shed," says farm manager Andrew Hunt.