Seedbed preparation for potatoes starts in August each year when we are keen to make good use of drier soil conditions. Any compacted parts of fields are loosened using a subsoiler prior to ploughing in the autumn.
The land is then left to weather by frosts over the winter months.
When the soil is dry enough in the spring we stone separate to remove any stones and dry clods etc before planting from mid march until the end of April.
We plant a range of varieties including salads and main crops for the baker markets aimed at supplying pre – pack quality potatoes for a range of high street retailers.
Harvesting begins in early July and we like to finish by early October before soil conditions start to turn damp.
Any crops not sold at harvest are stored in refrigerated insulated potato stores for sale later in the year.
We have been growing Onions on the farm since 1991.
As with potatoes, land preparation begins in the autumn prior to sowing the following spring.
We grow sets and drilled varieties and red and brown types.
Planting begins from the 25th February and we aim to have all the crops planted by the middle of March.
Harvesting begins with sets in early august whilst drilled crops are completed around the middle of September.
Once harvested, crops are brought back to the farm by tractor and trailer for grading prior to despatch to our end customers for drying and storage.
Sugar Beet has been grown on the farm for supply to British Sugar for many years.
As with the other root crops soil preparation starts in the autumn before precision sowing from the middle of March the following spring with a view to having all crops completed by the end of the month.
The crops are harvested and delivered for further processing by British Sugar at Bury St Edmunds from the end of September until the end of February.
Peas are a useful break crop to minimise the build up of pests and diseases.
They are planted in March before harvesting by combine in late July/early August.
Oilseed Rape has been grown on the farm since the mid 1970’s.
Being a very small seed it is important that it is planted into moist, firm, fine seedbeds in August in order for it to quickly emerge and grow. This helps it withstand the threat of feeding damage from wood pigeons during the winter months.
Once the soil temperatures begin to rise in the spring the crop grows quickly before producing very bright yellow flowers in mid April.
It is harvested from the end of July to the middle of August.
The crop is sold at harvest for further processing into oil for mayonnaise and margarine spreads.
We plant Winter Wheat between the middle of September and aim to finish planting by Christmas.
We carefully select varieties which are suited to our soils and climatic conditions and which also have good resistance to pests and diseases.
We like to sow varieties for supply to the feed and biscuit making markets.
The crop is harvested in August and stored and dried on the farm for sale later in the year.