The rainfall has made this harvest seem like an never-ending affair
When the harvest finished this year, there was no sense of satisfaction. It was more of a sense of relief. I hope by the time this is printed we will have our beans cut.
The last few weeks were a struggle to get crops cut - it was a few hours here and a few hours there. We managed to get it all baled and off the fields. Many were not so lucky.
There is plenty of straw on the ground, dotted all around the country. Straw is sitting in fields looking dull and lifeless, with the grass starting to grow up through it. Now in some parts, its just a salvage operation.
In general, the crop yields seem okay this year. It's just the end of the harvest seems to be never ending with shower after shower.
What did well and what did not? It was very clear that the only way for us to improve yield was to increase our acreage in rotation. All the first wheat did about one tonne more than the continuous.
The Weaver after oilseed rape did about 4.7mt per acre and the Costello after beans did just over 5mt per acre. The Lumos, Avatar and JB Diego in continuous all did just over 4mt per acre.
Considering they all have pretty much the same growing costs, this is a big difference.
The winter and spring barley did well considering the stress the spring barley went through in the April drought. We were very concerned about the winter barley lodging as it had received chicken litter in the autumn. It all stayed standing and the straw looked lovely, bright and golden. I believe the ground was very hungry and needed the nutrition.