Dodging Showers

07 August 2023

Thanking our lucky stars that we have no winter cereals which would be ripe by now and we would be, like many – dodging showers to harvest. Our spring planted cereals are looking ok and probably not ready until the end of August which gives time for the Jet Stream to move north. (That’s farming optimism not based on any science!)

So while we are not busy harvesting at the moment, it gives time for some of the projects we have been planning over the year to be completed. Fencing and water supplies have been installed at a neighbouring East Neuk Estates farm to initiate a mob grazing plan into their arable system. Now the team have got this process perfected, it made the install pretty seamless and completed just in time for the livestock to arrive.

 Building a corral for handling large numbers of livestock away from the main farm steadings, Poul has been putting his newly delivered Bryce Post Knocker through its paces since having it custom built. Fencing here continues with both maintenance and new, but the repairs of the old wooden fences are accelerating as we discover that the timber used was of poor quality and lacking in preservative. Compounded by increasing biological and fungal soil activity – it is no surprise…

Our inaugural Grass to Grill event was well attended with families and individuals keen to see what goes on around them. Many of the guests were local and so the chance to explain why and answer some really challenging questions was invigorating. All topped off with a BBQ featuring the best of Balcaskie produce and salad from East Neuk Market Garden and beer from Futtle. We will be doing more, so please do get in touch if you would like to be added to the list.

Our annual estate meeting was held in late July, bringing together the whole team to welcome new faces, explain the estates vision and make sure heath and safety is again highlighted. Especially important since the latest statistics for farm accidents make depressing reading.

On a happy note – a trip to Bute provided a chance to see some of the changes farmers are making to their practices, lowering inputs and working with nature. Especially important on an island where inputs are more expensive, the farms we visited had a common theme – they were forward thinking, happy to experiment, considered in their decisions and listened to their customers. The farm visits were followed by a pint at Bute Yard which recently opened and provides a link for producers and consumers of food and Drink. For a small island – they pack a big punch in the food and drink sector.


This week sees the “Space to Breath” exhibition at Bowhouse draw to a close. With 4 weeks of photography exhibition and events, the site is transformed with hanging photographs, some the size of a car, incredible photography from four world leading artists and an inspiring place to spend time.

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