Food production is a key focus at this farm, which has a fixed 6 year rotation including potatoes, carrots, broccoli, and soft wheat. 20-25% of the land is enrolled in the Agri-Environment Climate Scheme, which supports conservation efforts for farmland birds like the corn bunting.
The farm works to adhere to principles of regenerative agriculture as much as possible, including techniques like direct-drilled cereal establishment to help capture carbon in the soil and preserve soil structure. Additionally, the farm covers soil surfaces when possible and grows a diverse range of crops, using animal manures like hen dung to nourish the soil.
The integration of green manure options, offered through the AECS, also plays a significant role in maintaining soil health at the farm. Each year, the farm produces 2500 tons of cereals and vegetables in partnership with specialist contractors.
Regenerative agriculture is a term used to describe agricultural practices that seek to improve soil health after decades of mechanical compaction and soil exposure. At our farm, we work to minimize soil disturbance through techniques like direct drilling of cereals, which helps to conserve germination moisture and protect against evaporation by leaving the soil undisturbed and allowing harvest residues to remain on the surface.
We also cover soil surfaces when possible, allowing arable plants to grow and provide food and cover for insects, birds, and small mammals. Grain and arable plant seeds, in particular, are valuable sources of food for farmland birds. To further support soil health, we keep living roots in the soil and grow a diverse range of crops, including rotational green manure.
Green manure helps to protect the soil and improve its biodiversity, fertility, carbon content, and structure - all key components of regenerative agriculture.