Our cattle were very happy last week, we brought them into nice dry straw yards, writes David Morgan, of Strefford Hall Farm and Farm Shop, in Craven Arms.
They were not quite so pleased by us weaning the calves from them.
The calves haven’t grown so well this year, presumably because of the awful weather and poor quality grass. They will need to be wormed and the maiden heifers’ pregnancy tested soon.
We have 10 stabiliser cross, 18-month-old heifers which we’ll be advertising over the next few weeks. They should fit well into an autumn calving herd.
We will be feeding wheat-based home-milled cattle feed this year, rather than barley which we usually feed, due to the poor quality of the wheat sample.
All of this year’s crops have been blown into bins ready for home milling or transported to our co-operative store near Shobdon.
Yields have been disappointing with winter wheat 2.75 tonnes per acre, down half a tonne on average, oil seed rape 1.25 tonnes per acre, down three-quarters of a tonne on average, spring barley two tonnes per acre, down half a tonne on average and spring oats two tonnes per acre, down three-quarters of a tonne on average.
As you can see we are down on average, but our wheats have been closer to four tonnes per acre in recent years.
Hopefully next year’s crop will be better, though if we don’t get it in the ground this won’t be the case. We finally managed to sow 48 acres of wheat on Saturday.
Conditions were just dry enough to drill in to the drier soils with our power-harrow drill combination, though I was lifting weight from the drill in some damper places.
Dad has been sowing with the tined drill, which we can use to drill into wetter soils, but ideally this will need consolidating when/if the surface dries.
We had rain Saturday night so did not drill on Sunday, so caught up on paperwork.
Only about another 40 acres of wheat to get in so if we have three dry days this should not be a problem.
The rams have been in with the ewes since the middle of the month and all looks well.
We sold about three-quarters of our fat lambs and some store lambs last week.
The market price has dropped and so we will watch the market price this week.
I’ve got the Christmas order forms ready to post, so we’ll be addressing lots of envelopes.
The turkey price is up on last year, but we are taking orders for beef and lamb as well.
Mum has been making Christmas puddings and cakes for some time now, so that they are nicely matured ready for the big day.
Kim and I am looking forwards to this Christmas, which will be Oscar’s first.