Vining peas drilled

Since I last wrote we have done a lot of spraying and top dressing. The crops look very clean, if a little pale. We really need some sun and warmth as we are now past the longest day.

The vining peas have now emerged, as they were only drilled on 11 June, with all three fields drilling very differently. One was early autumn ploughed; the other two were worked in spring after improvements to the underground drainage in these fields. The one we cultivated with the puma to dry it out and then sumo trioed across the drains had kept the moisture better, although it was a little slow to drill across the trioing. The other field where the mustard cover crop had been, was ploughed, pressed and then trioed using one of the new JCB 4000 Fastracs we had on demonstration. This had lost more moisture and was a bit cloddy around what we call the “strong hole” (heavy clay patch) which we had power harrowed, but you never do enough when doing a part field. Due to the deep drilling depth we seem to have got away with it and emergence is good, with no bean seed fly as yet as on the overwintered ploughing. There was quite a bit of weed growth which we sprayed off with glyphosate, which can encourage this pest.

With our next open day coming up soon we have been grass mowing and generally improving the looks of the farm, pulling black-grass where possible and spraying where it is not. We also have quite a bit of sterile brome in a second wheat after spring beans. Spring beans do not give enough time on this land to get a good enough kill of seed before drilling winter wheat in a dry autumn; therefore we only have winter beans this year.

On damp mornings we have started on the grain stores, renewing cement grouting on the sides of the wooden drying floor where it was required and using mastic where the gap was too small for cement. We have also renewed the canvas connectors on two of our diesel fan units and the head gasket on one of the older engines so I hope we are about ready for harvest.

We are going to one of our local seed company’s trials this week to have a look at what is new on the seed front and have a look at some fertiliser trials as we keep looking at sulphur blends and inhibited urea with a view to get more out of our fertiliser.



Philip Meadley farms 250ha near Driffield, approximately four miles from the North Sea coast. In a four-way family partnership, he grows milling wheat, oilseed rape, peas and barley. Phil is particularly interested in soil health, reducing fuel usage, addressing mycotoxins and looking at his whole approach to cultivations.