A Novice and his Aitchison Grassfarmer.

hally

Member
Location
cumbria
In a tight sward, wean a lot of ewes onto it this time of year when drying them off and eat it into the wick, absolutely hammer it down to the soil, drill the seed ( fast growing, fert coated grass variety), and leave the ewes on for a week after then clear for 3 weeks then lightly graze with a lot of sheep but don’t let them eat down to the seeds, take them off again for another 3 weeks then graze as normal ( not too bare ) after that.
 
Walking around today after the rain overnight, and checking the recent sowings with the wee Aitchison.

The first areas of Herbal Ley for the Severn Trent Water STEPS was drilled into SB stubble after baling. Dry as a desert and rather hard clay. The grasses seem to be poking through now as do the "herbs", but deffo missing moisture. The areas I cultivated are very similar, and were also waiting for the rain, so hopefully, it will make a crop before Winter... Too expensive to fail :)

The budget Bee and Bird STEPS mix (from Kevin Tregunna) was also drilled into mainly SB stubbles and some subsoiled/disced/rolled tramlines and headland. Much to my surprise, the DD looks waaay better after 3 weeks. Bone dry on top, but the Baker Boots were just deep enough to find the moisture. Happy with this and should get established well before winter.

The earlier IRG/Fodder rape DD'd into WB stubbles was a bit of a fail, but was no better where I had disced!! I suspect drought and probably some herbicide residues caused the problem. Wanted a chisel or mould board plough I reckon, on the year...

In all a reasonable first set of results and I am pretty pleased with the machine. I can see that I must not discount a tickle with a cultivator or light discing to get a bit of tilth in the heavier land in a dry time... (y)
 
Walking around today after the rain overnight, and checking the recent sowings with the wee Aitchison.

The first areas of Herbal Ley for the Severn Trent Water STEPS was drilled into SB stubble after baling. Dry as a desert and rather hard clay. The grasses seem to be poking through now as do the "herbs", but deffo missing moisture. The areas I cultivated are very similar, and were also waiting for the rain, so hopefully, it will make a crop before Winter... Too expensive to fail :)

The budget Bee and Bird STEPS mix (from Kevin Tregunna) was also drilled into mainly SB stubbles and some subsoiled/disced/rolled tramlines and headland. Much to my surprise, the DD looks waaay better after 3 weeks. Bone dry on top, but the Baker Boots were just deep enough to find the moisture. Happy with this and should get established well before winter.

The earlier IRG/Fodder rape DD'd into WB stubbles was a bit of a fail, but was no better where I had disced!! I suspect drought and probably some herbicide residues caused the problem. Wanted a chisel or mould board plough I reckon, on the year...

In all a reasonable first set of results and I am pretty pleased with the machine. I can see that I must not discount a tickle with a cultivator or light discing to get a bit of tilth in the heavier land in a dry time... (y)
Pics man dont forget the pics🤦‍♂️
 
As requested pics... :)

.IMG_20200924_170101054.jpg

Fodder rape DD'd into a burned off Ryegrass ley. The Roundup worked well but the seed reservoir after a hay crop last year was a little higher than anticipated!! So Coos and calves will munch it off then more chemical before a Herbal Ley next Spring.

IMG_20200924_170539762.jpg

The budget Bee and Bird STEPS mix (from Kevin Tregunna) straight into a SB stubble. Possible need to go a little slower, to cut down the soil being thrown on the forward drill channels. I reckon, they get a bit too much soil cover on the small seeds. One total failed area where there was some WB, (that survived the winter!) and looking tonight, it appears as if the residual herbicide load mullered the new seeds. Will pop through with a cultivator tomorrow and try again over the weekend ;)

Saw this a few years ago with STurnips, and altered herbicide choices, but the contract lads would not have been taking my cropping into the equation this time, as it was a late switch.
 

neilo

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Montgomeryshire
Need to look in the Simtech thread? ;)

@neilo is the man!
🤣 I’m not sure I have any photos of cereals drilled with my Simtech, but happy enough with what it does (apart from missing tramlining). My Spring Barley was p*ss poor this year, but then my neighbour’s was worse, having been ploughed, power harrowed into submission, then combi-drilled. This season here, moisture retention certainly helped....a bit.:(
 

neilo

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Montgomeryshire
Yes but I think you will find he has pulled something through before the drill.
Sometimes, but not always. I will always shallow cultivate in some way after grazing root crops overwinter on clay ground. It would be foolish not to imo, unless you were willing to wait until late May to drill.
You might get away with it on lighter soils, or where you’d only grazed half the fodder crops off?
 
I 100% blame this forum for this recession busting bit of spending :rolleyes: !

Cant wait to get cracking to be honest. Very much hoping it'll have all the promised flexibility etc. Just need to rig up some slot covering of some description, and then good to go I hope.

Love the simplicity of it, though I was slightly surprised to find an electric area meter. Will add some pics as and when I have something to show
So..... how have you got on this Autumn? You are like me and are fully qualified to post to this thread, "A Novice and his Aitchison"!! :D
 

Bury the Trash

Member
Mixed Farmer
As requested pics... :)

.View attachment 909656

Fodder rape DD'd into a burned off Ryegrass ley. The Roundup worked well but the seed reservoir after a hay crop last year was a little higher than anticipated!! So Coos and calves will munch it off then more chemical before a Herbal Ley next Spring.

View attachment 909657

The budget Bee and Bird STEPS mix (from Kevin Tregunna) straight into a SB stubble. Possible need to go a little slower, to cut down the soil being thrown on the forward drill channels. I reckon, they get a bit too much soil cover on the small seeds. One total failed area where there was some WB, (that survived the winter!) and looking tonight, it appears as if the residual herbicide load mullered the new seeds. Will pop through with a cultivator tomorrow and try again over the weekend ;)

Saw this a few years ago with STurnips, and altered herbicide choices, but the contract lads would not have been taking my cropping into the equation this time, as it was a late switch.
Looks alright .

Free grass seed :oops: win win.

That's one thing the plough does is bury volunteer 'potential.'
The before pic seems to show quite a loose soil, not quite a ' firm base' to prevent poaching, other than that low cost establishment (y):unsure:

Trouble is the Drill in itself would be just about enough to bite off and chew, with the other costs of a 'low disturbance' subsioller and maybe a straw rake to complete the set, oh, I forgot a short disc as well , just in case...:eek:


All this machinery 'thing' is what find so difficult to be happy with tbh.would be great to not have any of it in any way shape or form....
 

Wigeon

Member
Arable Farmer
So..... how have you got on this Autumn? You are like me and are fully qualified to post to this thread, "A Novice and his Aitchison"!! :D
Not done a great deal yet tbh, only a bit of messing around with cover crops to get the hang of it.

I'm not sure though that this patience will be rewarded though after this weekend's deluge... not drilled a seed of winter corn yet, and I've rarely seen it this wet, even last year. Might be a while before I can give a proper update.

Main findings so far are that it doesnt like knotgrass (who does?), and that it doesnt now have an electric area meter after "someone" managed to wrap the overly long cable round one of the discs!
 

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