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The Dairygold Malting Barley Competition 2020 is held every year to showcase our growers and their business practices, to show how they include the crop in their rotation and maintain excellent standards. From all in Dairygold we would like to take this opportunity to thank all four growers in allowing us to this and congratulate all on efforts made throughout the year. The winner of the Dairygold Malting Barley Competition will be announced at 1pm on Friday the 26th.
Representing the Tipp area in the Malting Barley Competition are Patrick and Gerard O’Meara who farm in partnership at Garnavilla, Cahir Co Tipperary in the fertile plains of the Suir Valley. Gerard is married to Alison and they have one son Patrick Jnr. They run an extensive tillage farm along with a store to beef finishing enterprise, owning approximately 20% of the land worked.
The O’Meara’s have a good crop rotation in place, fodder beet followed by spring malt barley, then winter barley, winter oats /oilseed rape, and winter rye is also grown. All beet ground gets farmyard manure pre ploughing
and pH issues are corrected. Beet tops are grazed in-situ while watching ground conditions, not to compromise on soil structure. A Horsch Joker is used to till ground before drilling spring barley, minimising soil disturbance, and protecting soil health and microorganisms. Barley is fertilised in accordance with demands and full 2 spray fungicide program applied. Gerard has used Phylgreen seaweed products in recent years and is seeing the benefit of same reducing stress in times of inclement weather. Barley yields are generally 3.0-3.6 tons/acre with quality being well above average. Straw is baled by themselves and marketed to local farmers.
Recently Gerard has started growing winter rye and believes that very good yields of grain can be achieved along with very large volumes of straw, more cost effectively than growing winter wheat. A local beekeeper uses the oilseed rape fields for his hives and follows their rotation each year. Rape straw is incorporated back into the soil with the Horsch Joker. Glyphosate is only used when necessary and believes that by limiting its usage gets better efficiency when applied.
Store cattle are bought in, to be finished indoors on a silage, fodder beet and home-saved rye mix. The O’Meara’s are very well mechanised and provide an Agri-contracting service doing all works from stubble to stubble for local farmers. Grassland reseeding is also a specialty. Although the O’Meara’s have plenty to keep themselves busy with on the farm, work is avoided if possible on Sundays and is used for family time to relax.
Enter our competition today by sending in your favourite tillage related photo to firstname.lastname@example.org along with your name and phone number to be in with a chance of winning a nature box.