The wet conditions came back at around peak harvest time - perhaps not too bad for the earlier maturing autumn crops but certainly in time to make progress very difficult with the slightly later maturing spring crops. This meant that crop losses have been severe in the hardest hit areas, with most areas suffering to some degree.
The general outcome is that there is less spring seed for 2018:
- Low yielding spring seed crops
- Crops lost due to late harvest
- Many crops lost due to germination problems/ high moisture contents
Areas such as the west of Scotland, Northern Ireland, north-west England, south Wales and the south west of England were particularly affected. Autumn drilling in some of these areas has been very difficult and therefore spring seed requirements will be greater than normal.
I would, therefore, advise growers to think about their spring plans as early as possible and place an order to ensure that they have access to the varieties of choice.