We farm a variety of crops across our two farms, from beans to barley. At Wilmaston our crops are produced and sold for both human and animal consumption, while at Burtley, we feed our harvested grain to our organic cattle.
Barley & Wheat
Barley: A small amount is cut while it is green and ensiled as a high-quality feed, whilst the majority is combined and the seed is stored for animal consumption
Wheat: Produced and sold on for animal feed
Oil seed rape & spring beans
Oil Seed Rape: Helps improve soil structure and overall quality for future cropping. The harvested product is sold on for the food industry, animal feed or biodiesel.
Spring Beans: An excellent break crop, our beans ‘fix’ nitrogen in the soil, so when the plant material is turned it aids the next crop growth. We sell all our beans for human consumption.
Our wildlife conservation commitment
We have an ongoing commitment to enhance the environment, and have entered a Countryside Stewardship agreement, pledging to increase/enhance habitats helping the wildlife on our farm to thrive.
Flower mixes & buffer strips
Nectar rich flower mixes: Planted to increase areas of flowering plants to boost essential food sources for beneficial pollinators.
Buffer strips & Water course buffer strips: These are put into permanent vegetation to improve overall retention of water and soils, and provide good habitats for our wild animals. Coppicing and stock fencing has improved riverbank habitat and water quality, benefiting rare freshwater species.
Wild bird monitoring & food mixes
Wild bird monitoring project: We take part in an annual survey giving us great insight into how bird species are developing on the farm.
Wild bird food mixes: These provide a valuable year-round habitat and food for farmland wildlife such as pollinators and farmland birds, increasing important food resources, especially in winter and early spring.
Several new and rejuvenated areas have been established using several species of tree, enhancing the aesthetic nature of Wilmaston and increasing food availability for our wild bird populations.
We carefully manage our hedgerows with many areas now growing for two years in rotation before cutting. This means more blossom for invertebrates, and enables fruits and berries to grow providing food for overwintering birds.
Our Farm Lands
The majority of Burtley’s 750 acres of farmable land is grassland. The grass grown is mainly grazed by the cattle or made into hay and silage for winter feed.
We grow around 100 acres of barley which we harvest for the grain. This is then fed back to the fattening cattle during the winter. All our feed is home produced.
Our commitment to the environment
Since we have become organic we have been increased the levels of clover in the grass fields. Once established clover allows the grass pastures to grow without the use of artificial fertilisers.