Watch: Winter barley harvest kicks off in Co. Tipperary

The winter barley harvest has started. John C Byrne, pictured above (on the left), was cutting Pixel winter barley on Tuesday evening, July 9, at Ballynamona, Newcastle, Co. Tipperary.

John cut 7-8ac from 5:00pm on Tuesday evening, but rain halted progress. However, when AgriLand spoke to John, showers had passed and he had just started up the combine again this afternoon, Wednesday, July 10.

One load had been delivered to Bretts and early indications were for a yield of between 3.75-4t/ac. Moisture content was 18%, while the first load of Pixel had a KPH of 64.

“We’ve only 7ac or 8ac cut. We started cutting around 5:00pm yesterday evening and that’s all we’ve cut. We’ve one load gone. There were showers here this morning and I’m just after starting up the combine again,” John explained while talking to AgriLand.

John C Byrne, Ballynamona, Newcastle, Clonmel, Co Tipperary, pictured harvesting Pixel winter barley on Tuesday evening. Image source: O’Gorman Photography

John has 150ac of winter barley to cut and has help from a neighbour, Pat Fenton.

“The rest of the barley will be ready in a day or two. This is Pixel. It’s an early variety.”

Pixel generally has a short head, but high plant numbers. It is also very distinctive as the crop’s head sticks up in the air, unlike many other varieties which turn down when they are ripe.

John added that he gets on well with six-row barley.

We’re growing six-rows on and off since 2011. I’d be very much in favour of six rows. We have Belfry and Bazooka as well.

Yesterday marked the start of the harvest for John who, along with his winter barley, has Husky winter oats, Bennington winter wheat and Planet spring barley for malting to cut.

He is happy with how crops have progressed over the season, but one thing he is unsure of is the harvest price. While he hoped prices would be in the same region as last year he laughed, knowing this is unlikely to be the case.

“I think crops are looking very, very promising. Time will tell. Price is my only problem.”