Blankney Farm Update – 16 February 2021

We have done five surveys, all with positive outcomes – we have populations of grey partridges, tree sparrows and good populations of yellowhammers and fieldfares.

With over 300 hectares of cover crop this year, and a cold and wet start since Christmas, field operations have been delayed. However, cover crops will preserve the organic nutrition of the soil, which is advantageous to our spring crops. Cover cropping has been something we have done for 12 years and we believe it has been a significant contributor to our soil.

The sugar beet harvest is now complete – we have had disappointing yields at 63 tonnes a hectare – this is largely down to the virus ‘yellows’. To put this into perspective, these were the yields we were achieving 20 years ago.

We now wait for the Spring; ground conditions need to improve and dry up and we will start the harvest process all over again for our vining pea crop.