The Farming Column with Sam Walton

If only all drilling could go as well as this.
If only all drilling could go as well as this.

In farming today, timeliness is everything for good results. It would be easy if every year was the same so you would know exactly what to do on any specific day, to get absolute maximum out of any crop.

I mentioned recently that August is usually an extremely wet month and it was again this year but by the middle of September, that too had given it a run for it’s money.

Having drilled the rape after the winter barley in excellent conditions, the rape land to follow wheat was also prepared in a good state to start the next day.

However, it rained the next day, not just a shower but half an inch.

Next day was almost dry enough to start drilling but yes, you have guessed, a cloudburst from somewhere, maybe the West Indies, appeared and put the kibosh on that little exercise. I had sort of set the date of 11 September as the cut off point but that has now been far exceeded, so I expect the expensive seed will have to sit in the shed until next year.

That just leaves the wheat to sow and again I like that to be in by 6 October.

As I write in mid-September and ever dark increasing clouds appear, will that be possible?

Decisions, decisions, decisions!

Of course if not much rape is sown on time, will that increase the price?

If not enough wheat enters the ground, will the same apply?

So what do we do about prices? Do we take a price to sort of cover a bit or do we gamble and hope prices will soar.

I was always told that when the price gets neat, 12 o’ clock so to speak, always fasten a bit as not often can we actually hit the top and if you miss it, the price soon get past the mark and you wish you had. My clock in my office has stopped!