Around you, you will see fields of winter wheat and Winter Linseed. Winter Linseed, like sugar beet, is a crop new to the farm, with this year being only the second year the farm have planted this crop.
The Linseed is drilled in the middle of September, and is ready for harvest by the following July. Around this time the field will be a deep purple colour. This then allows wheat crops to be established after the Linseed harvest, maximising the field’s productivity.
It is an ideal crop to use rather than rape, as it reduces the build up of club root and viral inflections, and is more resistant to rabbits and deer. Whilst they might nibble some, there will be no large-scale feeding unlike other crops. More information about why Winter Linseed has emerged as a better alternative to rape is available here.
Linseed (or flaxseed) has become a popular health food, high in both fibre and Omega 3 fatty acids. They can be eaten whole, ground, or pressed into oil.
You will see each field is bordered with a margin where no crops are grown, and hedgerows. These are vital links between different habitats and help to reduce soil erosion. To find out more just how essential hedgerows are across the landscape, click here.