May 2019

As I sit here writing this the sun is shining, the birds are singing, I heard the cuckoo calling this morning and the swifts have returned from their Winter away. Summer seems just around the corner.

We go into the Summer with all of our crops looking well. Last Autumn was kind to the crops with mild weather and not too wet. This Spring has been a complete turn around from last year, with March last year very wet and the “Beast from the East”, which meant that planting was delayed by nearly 6 weeks. This year has seen much kinder weather and so our crops, Spring Barley and Peas have been planted in good time and in perfect conditions, we have also been lucky to get just enough rainfall when the crops have needed it. This is definitely unusual to find a farmer who is not complaining about the weather… it won’t last I am sure!

Our cows have finished calving and are out grazing and moving their way around the farm. We keep them in one big group and split our fields up into small paddocks which will provide them enough food for two days. We then move them on every two days. The cows do not return to graze the same grass for around 60 days allowing plenty of recovery time, for the grasses.

Our sheep have moved on to pastures new, so that I can focus more time and effort into the cows, growing the herd over the next couple of years.

A new addition on the farm are some bee hives which a local beekeeper has introduced to help pollinate our flowering crops and produce some honey.

We have many areas across the farm which are managed to encourage wildlife to thrive. One of these is an area of bare ground which is managed to encourage waders, such as lapwing and stone curlew, this is being monitored by the RSPB and they have already seen evidence of successful nesting of both target species this year.

Farmers enjoy seeing people out walking, running and riding on their farms. Please help us by keeping to marked footpaths and by keeping dogs under close control, better still on a lead. Young animals, both livestock (especially lambs) and wildlife (particularly ground nesting birds like the lapwing and stone curlew) are very vulnerable to overzealous dogs.