Harvest is fast approaching, yet the weather feels more like mid-November than July. Today the temperature is 11°C and my rain gauge is reading 26mm of rain!

Thankfully, we completed second cut silage at Shandford before this wet spell crept in. Only a light cut has been taken as we are hopeful for a third cut if possible to fill the pit. We are relatively happy with the quality of the first two cuts as they were harvested while the sun shone and the grass was dry.

Our winter barley will be needed when it is cut, as the end of last year’s barley and wheat have both been treated with Maxammon and are now ready to feed cattle when required. A selection of hoppers have been put out with the summer, 2019-born Charolais cross steers and heifers, and hopefully a large percentage will be away fat before they are brought in for the winter.

READ MORE:Two-year-old heifer calves unaided

We have already put away some of the Aberdeen-Angus steers at 15-16 months, which have been finished off grass. When we put one batch of 30 Angus steers through the weigh crate in between grass fields, we found they had an average weight gain of 120kg over three months which works out at an average daily weight gain of 1.33kg, which I was delighted with.

The very last cow to calve is still holding on. With a week since the last one calved, it always feels like a long wait until you can officially say you’re finished calving.

Bulls are due to go out with the summer calving cows on August 1. The team will be made up of varying ages of nine Aberdeen-Angus bulls and a Simmental bull. Two of the Angus bulls are home-bred with four others being from James Arnott’s Coul herd.

READ MORE: Calving progressing well at Shandford

The calving ease of the Angus breed is a big draw, in addition to this they have a very easy going temperament, are quiet to work with and seem to suit our grazing ground well. The breed is giving us a real selection of great heifers to bull in the future which we feel suit our current requirements.

Father often comments that the Aberdeen-Angus is a different breed today compared to that of 50 years ago, when we were moving into Charolais.

On the sheep front, 50% of the lambs are weaned and the remaining two lots will be weaned in the next few weeks to ensure we have a regular supply of lambs ready for the market.

When they are taken off their mothers they are put on reseeded grass which is clean and has been cut for silage. Ewe lambs to be retained will be selected as we go through them.

READ MORE: Doing our bit as part of the food chain

We have been selling lambs a little lighter, at 40kg, with the better trade which is running at 40p per kg ahead of this time last year and very welcome. Most of these lambs have been Suffolk crosses.

We have also turned over two fields for forage rape and stubble turnip mixture. We did have a third field in mind but the current wet weather conditions are hindering progress. However, we are hopeful we can drill in more feed for sheep once the winter barley is harvested.

Our straw stocks seem to be looking healthy as we have some spare carried over from last year. Surplus anything is always welcomed in farming. I am wishing for a dry August so that harvest can run smoothly. Fingers crossed.