Harvest weather causing serious problems for tillage farmers

A storm is not what tillage farmers want to hear when they listen to the weather forecast in August. The main harvest is upon us and the weather is not playing ball.

Tillage farmers have been prevented from entering fields for days and yield and quality are being affected.

With an exceptional amount of spring crops planted this year, the majority of the harvest lies ahead for many. Spring barley and winter wheat will be the main order of business once the clouds fade away and they will need to be cut as soon as possible.

Spring barley crops are breaking down and both barley and wheat crops are sprouting in the field.

Straw which was not gathered will also prove hard to save and require a lot of effort, while the rain will not help straw yield.

It is what can only be described as an ugly harvest from the secondary growth standing over ripe crops to the germinating grains on the standing plants.

Wheat sprouting this week

Counties which were lucky enough to get rain when needed during the summer and which had exceptional yields before the weather broke are now facing into sprouted grains and poor quality.

But, as one agronomist said this week, the darkest hour comes before the dawn.

The weather will improve and the combines roll.

Many farmers are now looking forward to the next crops that will be planted, but they should remember that tillage farmers are all in the one boat and, while the work may lie ahead, the most important thing is that everyone returns home safely.

Rainfall levels for the month of August 2020 up to August 17:
  • Oak Park – 29.9mm;
  • Casement – 21.2mm;
  • Johnstown Castle – 42.4mm;
  • Moore Park – 58.4mm;
  • Malin Head – 55.1mm.