August 2003                       Click here to go back to this year

Ploughing Barley Stubble

The end of July saw harvest completed at Casterton, all straw baled and in store, stubble ploughed ready for the planting of Oil Seed Rape, and all machinery moved back to Hadley ready for the start of the wheat harvest this month.

Chopping wheat straw
Windrowing wheat straw

We started to harvest Deban second wheat at Hadley on the 2nd of August this year. This must be the earliest start on wheat ever for us. Completion came on the 8th, 5 days before we had even started last year! The weather this week has been hot and sunny with the temperature reaching over
30 deg C at times. All wheat has gone directly into store between 15% and 13% moisture.

Most straw has been baled and carted away by neighboring farms, but the surplus has been chopped and incorporated with our disc harrows. Considering the dry spring and the early harvest, yield had been above average for us. 30 tonnes have been sold and loaded off farm in order to ease the storage. We have now sold 150 tonnes of feed wheat forward for December movement at £80/T. This is a figure we canít refuse considering that last year we were moving wheat at £57. I shall be happy to regret selling this if the price continues to improve!

Drilling Oil Seed Rape

Having saved our Recital Oil Seed Rape seed from harvest and had it professionally cleaned, we set about drilling it on the 9th. In dry dusty conditions, the seed bed was rolled afterwards to consolidate and retain moisture. Seed rate this year worked out to be
3 Kg/Ha

Harvesting Target winter beans

The harvest of Quattro spring beans was completed on the 19th, which just leaves 10 Ha of Target winter beans to complete. Although the straw is still quite green in places, the seed is coming off the combine at around 13% moisture.

Oil Seed Rape Seedlings

By the 23rd, OSR has been drilled for two weeks. In that time their hasnít been any useful rain to encourage germination, however 80% of the seed has managed to find moisture and grow.