April 2013


The first week of April and it is snowing with days of consecutive frosts. The last 12 months have delivered 49.343 inches of rain, on the farm, and the average here would be 32 inches. To those that live in the towns this may be no more than an inconvenience, to those of us that are trying to grow crops and grass, and then feed livestock, it has been a real challenge and continues to be. The ground has now dried in the last few days. Thousands of Gem lettuce, about to be planted in absolutly freezing conditions and there is going to be a serious shortage of home grown veg in May, it is just too cold to grow.

We have now just endured the rigours of the annual TB test, and ended up with with 3 inconclusive. This means the cows are not reactors, but will have to be tested again in 8 weeks time, and hopefully will then go clear, this is in stark contrast to a couple of friends recently who have lost several hundred cows as positives and had their dairy herds decimated. Is there no politician out there with the guts to take this issue by the horns and deal with it, is the tax payer really happy having to fund this bizarre sherade to the tune of £100m every year and escalating.


And now some bad news, ASDA caught selling horse meat in their bully beef cans with a little bit of bute to liven it up. But there is good news on the same day, Hampshire’s Sausage and Pie competition had 38 butchers and Farm shop entrants and no end of entries, to prove that local butchers are still out there and doing a darn sight better job than the big boys. LJ Smith and Son, from Bishopstoke won best Hampshire sausage, flavoured with Lyburn Garlic and Nettle.