Bone dry April! So much for April showers… Admittedly its has been wonderful weather, but it comes with a price. Veg growing is a little challenging in dry Aprils, if you are directly sowing seed just make sure that you keep that seed bed moist. Once the seed has germinated keep it well watered, in this heat there is a risk of the new leaves burning off.
Grassland, some of you may be thinking about taking a cut of hay this year. If so keep an eye on the forecast, it will pay to put a little fertilizer on a day before a light shower is due. But only do it before a little shower not a down pour. Too much rain will simply wash the fertilizer away without the grass having a chance to absorb the nutrients. The combination of heat and a little rain will seriously push the grass growth on. Aim to make hay in June, thats when its at its best. Good hay is leafy and cut just as the seed heads emerge. Although it is still ok to make hay in July, the nutritional content will have been reduced.
An update on Jimmys Farm, lambing has almost finished, just some Oxfords left its their first lambing. The in calf cows are looking like they are starting to bag up with milk. Chicks have grown really well. This week we are going to be very busy ploughing and preparing the seed bed for all of the veg. I decided with the veg to plant everything in one hit. So all of the April and May sowings are going in together. Thompson & Morgan are supplying all of my seed.
My AM vs PM pig feed trial is going very well. The PM pigs are literally flying in front on growth, they look totally different and behave totally different. I must admit I had concerns about they might turn a little fatty but they are very fit! I am starting to think that I may turn the whole farm onto PM feeding…
I also plan to put in a few acres of stubble turnips to finish some of our rare breed on in the Autumn. For the cattle a few acres of kale. Oh and not forgetting my beloved pumpkins!!! I might even do another world record this Halloween to make it the hat trick of records.