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Dry January perfect for harvest

Dry January perfect for harvest
Mid Canterbury Federated Farmers' arable chairman Darrell Hydes said the hot dry weather is just what Mid Canterbury farmers need.

The hot sunny days are providing perfect conditions for Mid Canterbury’s arable farmers as the harvest season gears up.

Now they're hoping the fine weather continues, unlike the past few harvests where rain reduced yields.

Mid Canterbury Federated Farmers arable chairman Darrell Hydes said farmers had plenty of rain through spring and early summer and the dry conditions were exactly what farmers want for the harvest.

“Good hot weather is what we need.”

Hydes said the weather was much better for harvesting than the past two or three years, which had been wet.

He said new crops were maturing and ripening off and the district had “pretty good crops” - except for farmers affected by a band of hail that came through before Christmas.

Hydes, who farms near Methven, had fields badly damaged by the hail and had to scupper the harvest in some fields. But he has other fields with crops like fescue and rapeseed maturing nicely.

Methven-based May Brothers Contracting managing director and harvest manager Phil May said the season had a slightly slower start but was "full go" at the moment with grass and silage starting to dry out.

The late December rains had made things a "little bit trickier" for harvest, but had helped the grass and crops grow, he said.

His team had only had the statutory days off as they worked through grass, field silage and barley in Mid Canterbury fields.

"We're hoping the nice weather continues," May said.

  • Sharon Davis