William Hamilton

2 January 1998

William Hamilton

William Hamilton is tenant

on the 205ha (506-acre)

Rosery Farm, Little

Stonham, Stowmarket,

Suffolk. Main crops are

winter wheat and oilseed

rape but he also grows

winter beans and

vining peas

A HAPPY and healthy New Year to one and all, although it does not promise to be a prosperous one at present.

Some of our feed wheat has now left the farm and Teddy has been busy drying the Charger which is due to be delivered this month. The wheat has been held in our wooden KKK silos since harvest and ventilated periodically to maintain its condition, although the moisture content has not come much below 16.5%.

Once we have dried the crop it will be blown into the galvanised bins outside the main grain store ready for loading as required.

On the subject of wheat, our field of Abbot beside the A140 Ipswich to Norwich trunk road is looking considerably greener than it was a month ago. Many of the plants I thought were dead have sprouted new green leaves. I shall never cease to be amazed by the power with which a wheat plant is endowed to recover from and compensate for adversity.

The representative from the breeding company inspected the crop, took samples and I await his diagnosis. Hopefully we will be able to avoid such pitfalls in the future.

Meanwhile, Teddys brother Cyril has spent much of his time helping a neighbour by carting sugar beet from field to clamp. After an area is harvested Cyril ploughs the land using our Fiat 160/90 tractor, which proceeds merrily along under adverse conditions with the diff-lock engaged.

Son Angus has also spent time away. He is de-stoning land for a local contractor friend, Sefton Brightwell, who has a deal to de-stone onion fields in the Thetford area prior to sowing. It is all grist for the mill at an otherwise slack time of year on our mainly combinable crop farm.

Sickly looking wheat alongside the A140 has thankfully perked up now, says Suffolk farmer William Hamilton. But the cause of the problem is a mystery, so a report from the breeder is awaited with interest.

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