With all of the wild weather, March appeared to enter like a pride of ferocious roaring lions, but as I write it appears to be changing into something that resembles a lamb. Let’s hope it stays that way for a while.
The lambing season has neatly coincided with calls to self-isolate and we are ahead of the game. As I write, the only Corona here is in the fridge.
We are getting towards the halfway point with all of our ewes in the lambing shed and more individual pens going up.
The ewes have responded well to the TMR feeding regime and are in good order. Inevitably there are still the usual lambing time problems – sheep will still be sheep.
The Texel ewes are almost done. We have been pleased with the lambs from our new stock tup, Loosebeare Breadwinner, and I am looking forward seeing how they progress.
This year’s shearling tups have had a good winter and will be arriving home soon. They have been grazing in the sunlit pastures of Low Furness, so it will be a bit of a come down to return to Plumpton. They are as strong as we have had, so hopefully they will do themselves justice at the sales.
We are seeing the first bit of grass growth for a while. A tickle of urea is being applied to get things going and, with any luck, there will be a decent early bite for the ewes and lambs.
Due to the weather we have been unable to spread the lime we planned to after our autumn soil tests.
Hopefully we might get a chance soon.
After five and a half years of writing my diary, this column will be my last. I have really enjoyed scribbling my thoughts every month and it has been wonderful to meet so many people that took the time to read it.
When I began writing, I set off thinking ‘hopefully this will help sell a few tups’. I never thought it would last this long.
Writing has given me some great experiences. We have hosted farm walks and I have had invitations to speak. I will always be grateful for the opportunity, but I think it is time for a change.
And with change in mind, we are living in interesting times, with ever more demands on the role of the farmer.
The world is changing in so many ways and we will do our best to react.
Farming will be at the centre of so much as society focuses, more than ever, on health and wellbeing.
Agriculture can provide solutions to these modern problems through the food we produce and the environment we care for.
We are up for the challenge.