Search results

  1. martian

    Straw rake on mole plough?

    Has anyone tried to fix some kind of arrangement to the front of a mole plough beam to deflect chopped straw away, to stop it balling up under the beam and lifting the mole? Ours is dragged round by an old crawler, so no front linkage to fix an acrobat wheel to (which I guess would be an option).
  2. martian

    Groundswell 2021

    We've just put tickets on sale for this years show, which will be on 23rd/24th June, just after Boris's end of restrictions day, 21st June. So we are planning to go ahead as normal. Except nothing is normal now, not even farming. There are some really interesting things going on,on farms around...
  3. martian

    Natural Capital

    Interesting piece on C4 news last's only a matter of time before it turns into cash for farmers
  4. martian


    Good conference so far...enjoyed Clive's contribution on living clover mulches and some good stuff coming up. Anyone else involved?
  5. martian

    New Year, new agronomist?

    Reading various posts on TFF, you get the impression that a lot of farmers are a bit frightened of their agronomists, or/and they don't like the advice they give, not least because many advisors seem to have convinced themselves that no-till won't work on your farm, or could it be that they...
  6. martian

    Entangled Life

    Just been having a great Christmas read of this book Entangled Life by Merlin Sheldrake. I can't recommend it highly enough to anybody who is remotely interested in the soil (which should be everyone on here). It is all about fungi and how little we know about them, as mainstream science tends...
  7. martian

    What was Thomas Gray's ploughman up to?

    You'll all be familiar with Thomas Gray's Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard (1751): The curfew tolls the knell of parting day The lowing herd wind slowly o'er the lea The ploughman homeward plods his weary way And leaves the world to darkness and to me (and so on for another thirty odd...
  8. martian

    FT In this morning's paper. You never know what you're going to find
  9. martian

    Webinar alert

    Groundswell and the PFLA are collaborating on a webinar: Should be interesting
  10. martian

    Fibershed and other stuff

    I've just been rereading bits of Fibershed by Rebecca Burgess. It's a very interesting book (in parts) about the clothing business and the part that farmers play in it, or could play in it. As I wear the same thing pretty much everyday, I'm not exactly interested in fashion, but I do find the...
  11. martian

    What are the benefits of no-till farming?

    Reading other peoples horror stories about harvest elsewhere on the forum, I'm minded to keep my head down as things don't seem too bad here. It's not been a record breaking harvest (and we've still got a fair bit of spring wheat to cut), but things haven't gone too badly and it's been a cheap...
  12. martian

    Cattle eating dangerous?

    Some thoughtful fisherfolk left a gate open yesterday so our main mob spent a few hours exploring the exciting world of silvopasture...unfortunately they were particularly drawn to a couple of yew trees and some rhododendrons out of the whole wood. Has anyone experience of how dangerous grazing...
  13. martian

    Situation Vacant Farm Manager

    Details in following link...
  14. martian


    I'm in two minds about the benefits of trees in pasture, ever since I saw Joel Salatin cutting down hedgerow trees as he didn't want his grazing animals camping under them in the heat or rain and thus concentrating their crap in one part of the field rather than all over the cell. But then he...
  15. martian

    Groundswell 2020

    Tickets for this years show are now on sale and selling fast...I don't think we'll sell out quite as fast as the ORFC, but you don't want to be caught out! We have rejigged the lay-out: we will be holding all the talks in seven different tents on a new field, immediately adjacent to the new site...
  16. martian

    How's it gone/going?

    We're evidently in a hosepipe ban zone here, as we've managed to get most of our drilling done after the rain started. We haven't had as much wet as a lot of you, but the ground has taken what we have had well and leaving the weedy stubble has supported the drill nicely. We've been impressed...
  17. martian

    Revisiting the Elterwater Challenge

    The original challenge was thrown down in 2010. We are hoping to update it and throw it down again. We have a session booked at Groundswell at 5.30 on Wednesday. Who wants to lead it?
  18. martian

    Tractor design for no-till

    I've got an old friend coming down to attend the Groundswell Show (well, he's a friend who's old, I haven't known him that long...) and he's keen to investigate how tractors could be designed with no-till farming in mind. He designed and built the Tinkabi tractor in Swaziland, which was...
  19. martian

    Do we need a combine?

    Reading posts about straw chopping/dealing with a mat of straw and, also, watching David Purdey and his team setting up a compaction demonstration for Groundswell, got me thinking that combines are increasingly designed for the benefit of machinery makers rather than farmers. Quarter of a...
  20. martian

    Documentary film maker looking for farmers

    Simon Clode has been in touch wondering if we know of any farmers thinking of going no-till or in the early years of conversion, as he's hoping to make a documentary about soil health etc and is looking for stars...I said the easiest thing would be post it on here and ask for volunteers...