Crop Failure

kiwi pom

Member
Location
canterbury NZ
Just watched a YouTube video of Mike Mitchell in Canada starting his harvest. The drought has meant there's virtually no crop but he's out there with the combines trying to collect up enough lentils for some seed to plant next season. It sounds like its not a rare event either.
Got me wondering, what are the poorest harvests you can remember and was it because it was too wet or too dry?
 

kiwi pom

Member
Location
canterbury NZ
2002. Planted nearly 2 ton / acre of organic potatoe seed, only managed to harvest 120 ton off 50 acres. Beginning of the end here for organic farming.
Not flash too wet or diseased crop?
I think it was spring 2000 when I left my last fulltime UK job and spent the last week ploughing spuds in, that we never harvested and they rotted. About 60 acres I think.
 

BrianV

Member
Livestock Farmer
Just watched a YouTube video of Mike Mitchell in Canada starting his harvest. The drought has meant there's virtually no crop but he's out there with the combines trying to collect up enough lentils for some seed to plant next season. It sounds like its not a rare event either.
Got me wondering, what are the poorest harvests you can remember and was it because it was too wet or too dry?
With crop disasters such as this now happening far more often all over the world it might just possibly give us some optimism that farming in the UK might not be such a bad thing, it's worth considering when you are thinking of signing up to any of the new subsidy straight jackets that by committing to grow far less might mean missing out on rising prices in the future.
 

7610 super q

Member
Arable Farmer
Not flash too wet or diseased crop?
I think it was spring 2000 when I left my last fulltime UK job and spent the last week ploughing spuds in, that we never harvested and they rotted. About 60 acres I think.
Late planted, still cold and wet in June, blight arrived early......
 

glasshouse

Member
Location
lothians
1985 . Dad planted 70 acres combining peas after a great go in 1984. After 4 weeks trying to salvage something (would nibble a wee bit any drying afternoon), with 2 combines and numerous huge breakdowns we were left with less than 2 t of dried crap!
Peas broke many a farm that year
It was my first year at home after college.
We grew osr for first time which was a star performer as we didnt swathe it
Did big bale silage for first time, and put after an arguement growth regulator on all the wheat bar one field which went flat while the rest stood
A lot of wheat locally was abandoned that yr, and all the peas
A neighbouring farm was charged £40/ t. For drying
 

teslacoils

Member
Location
Lincolnshire
2004/5

Had just bought our first farm. Then it started raining. 400ac. Got 80ac first wheat in. Osr just about avoided being written off. 150ac second wheat went in without the previous rubbish being sprayed off. Was the start of the "small loss better than a big loss" and the idea that you work all year to try to loose less money than doing nothing.

2012/13.

Schedule was 800ac wheat, 600ac osr. Ended up with 100ac spring wheat, 100ac winter wheat, 150ac poor osr, 80ac linseed.

Was mainly CFA work and ended up with lots of machinery hp to pay with good as no income. Was very sobering. And the start of subbing out the draught work.

2019/20

Looked at soil. Said no. Got 80ac sp barley and 110ac sp oats with 250ac fallow. Applied only digestate, and one spray of CCC and manganese on the barley. Let 80 percent of my fbt land go. Had packed up contracting at the end of the previous summer.

I've never had a bad year from it being too dry, although I've written off osr from it just not getting forecast rain (looks like this year). Slightly ironic as we moved here in part due to the previous sand farm having crops that just died in the sun.
 
Location
Ceredigion
Last year ,wet dry cold wet dry wet wet dry .in extreme
Hay harvest failed in many parts ,lot of corn never got planted, lot of the Midlands was a Barron wasteland , guys baling straw 90 bales off 90 acres
 

glasshouse

Member
Location
lothians
2004/5

Had just bought our first farm. Then it started raining. 400ac. Got 80ac first wheat in. Osr just about avoided being written off. 150ac second wheat went in without the previous rubbish being sprayed off. Was the start of the "small loss better than a big loss" and the idea that you work all year to try to loose less money than doing nothing.

2012/13.

Schedule was 800ac wheat, 600ac osr. Ended up with 100ac spring wheat, 100ac winter wheat, 150ac poor osr, 80ac linseed.

Was mainly CFA work and ended up with lots of machinery hp to pay with good as no income. Was very sobering. And the start of subbing out the draught work.

2019/20

Looked at soil. Said no. Got 80ac sp barley and 110ac sp oats with 250ac fallow. Applied only digestate, and one spray of CCC and manganese on the barley. Let 80 percent of my fbt land go. Had packed up contracting at the end of the previous summer.

I've never had a bad year from it being too dry, although I've written off osr from it just not getting forecast rain (looks like this year). Slightly ironic as we moved here in part due to the previous sand farm having crops that just died in the sun.
You disppeared off tff for a while in 2012?
 

Kevtherev

Member
Location
Welshpool Powys
1985 v bad year for wet harvest
2007 extremely wet year silage and cornfields were a mud bath couldn’t unhook trailers without a timber block and frogs were going up the forage harvester I was washing pickup reel out every evening it was that full of mud.
1985 I remember crops of black hay and my father travelling up the uncut grass with fahr loader wagon just to get out of the fields.
 

DeeGee

Member
Location
North East Wales
1987 was my first year on my own after my father had died suddenly the previous autumn; and I honestly thought I was going to lose the spring barley crop that September. Seemed to be nothing but rain after rain in late August and through September, with every weekly farming forecast being depressingly similar.

There was only about forty acres to harvest but the combining contractors were all way behind with the harvest, and it would have been a massive loss to me if we hadn’t got it, as well as all the problems of salvage on sodden fields.

Luckily, somehow we got it all in the last week of September, finishing on the 29th, in relatively good condition; but I will never forget that the threat of a big loss was very real to me that year.
 

Boysground

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Wiltshire
I have a relative in Nova Scotia who would always insure his crops but that was mostly high value veg. I’ve checked he’s 2700 miles from Mike, slightly different weather.

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Update on the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot

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Update on the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot

Written by Lisa Applin

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In July, we opened the applications window for farmers to join our Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot.

The Sustainable Farming Incentive is 1 of the 3 new environmental land management schemes. It sits alongside the future Local Nature Recovery and Landscape Recovery schemes.

Through the Sustainable Farming Incentive, farmers will be paid for environmentally sustainable actions – ones that are simple to do and do not require previous agri-environment scheme experience.

We are piloting the scheme to...
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