Testimonials

Wheat cover crop a new wrinkle Wheat cover crop a new wrinkle

Winter wheat as a cover crop for soybeans is a little different for North Carolina farmers Darryl Corriher and Tom Hall. Cover crops are just one of several factors that allow the North Carolina farmers to farm large acreages of grain and remain timely and efficient in their production practices. Darryl Corriher started farming in 1975. A few years later a farm neighbor and friend Tom Hall wanted to get back into production farming. Now, over 30 years late C&H Grain Company is one of the most productive grain operations in the North Carolina Piedmont.

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USDA Central Great Plains Research Station, Akron, Colorado, USA USDA Central Great Plains Research Station, Akron, Colorado, USA

According to Vigil, stripper header harvested stubble provided more moisture conserving benefits than conventionally harvested stubble. His research has found that the stripped wheat stubble reflects heat, reducing evaporation; increases water infiltration; slows down the wind, furthering reducing evaporation; traps snow and, ultimately, increases soil water storage.

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Dave Wagers, Woodrow, Colorado, USA Dave Wagers, Woodrow, Colorado, USA

“I feel like the standing stubble gives the ground more ability to retain moisture,” David said. “It shades the ground more, lasts longer (than shorter stubble) and keeps the wind off the crop growing in the stubble, which also helps retain the moisture. The taller stubble also captures more snow. Typically a lot of our moisture is from snowfall and snow melt. It’s all economics to try and save the moisture.”

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Ed Getz, Hoxie, Kansas, USA Ed Getz, Hoxie, Kansas, USA

“The wheat is a byproduct. We want the straw to put the corn back into it,” Getz said in explaining his decision. “A significant number of people will agree with me. If you had to pay off ground in this part of the country with wheat, you’d have to raise a lot of it. The economics aren’t there. But, we need that straw to save moisture for the corn.”

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Stacy Hoeme, Scott City, Kansas, USA Stacy Hoeme, Scott City, Kansas, USA

He believes the no-till is paying off, even in the extremely dry conditions the region has experienced this year. He raised an average of 41 bushel wheat in 2006, well above what many farmers experienced. His grain sorghum after wheat has also averaged higher than conventionally tilled and harvested fields during the recent drought years. The difference, he believes, lies in the straw. “One of the great benefits of the stripper header is the wheat stubble it leaves for the milo,” Hoeme said. “If there is good stubble, then you’ll get a good, solid milo stand that maintains even in the dry years.” He has compared his stripper-cut fields with ones harvested with conventional or draper heads and has found significant differences. The advantages of the stripped straw is especially noticeable when conventional and stripper heads have been used in the same or adjacent fields.

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Stripper Headers Generate Interest In Northwest Idaho & Central Washington Stripper Headers Generate Interest In Northwest Idaho & Central Washington

Located in Northwest Idaho is Millhorn Farms Inc, owner Seth Millhorn farms around 8,000 acres. He raises Wheat, Kentucky Bluegrass, Chickpeas, Oats and Timothy. Seth has found a niche market for wheat straw and has recently purchased two brand new 2011 CVS32 Stripper Headers for harvesting his wheat. The heads are running on a pair of CNH8010 hillside combines. The Stripper heads were purchased from Jones Truck & Implement in Colfax, WA

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High Plains No-Till Takes Patience

No-till can be a sticky issue in the semi-arid plains of western Kansas. Hard soils during wheat planting, higher operating costs that come with more intense crop rotations and chemical resistance with weeds in some areas of the state have caused some farmers to dust off the plough and bring tillage back into their cropping system.

The Kastens family near Herndon, Kan., meanwhile, has gone full no-till and hasn’t looked back. The long-term benefits of soil conservation and water efficiency, they argue, are well worth the effort.

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Stripper header helps producer save money, time, and increases yields

Winter is when many producers spend time researching new techniques and new equipment.

Kent Squires, who farms just outside of Geraldine, Mont., spent four winters researching one specific piece of equipment, a Shelbourne Reynolds stripper header.

“They were originally built for harvesting rice. Because of the stiff stem on the rice it wouldn’t go through the combine, so they built a header that just combed the rice out of the head and left the whole stock still standing. After they built it, they found out it worked super good for wheat,” said Squires.

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Stripper Headers Improve No-Till

Vigil gets farmers’ attention when he tells them that storing water in just the top inch of an acre of land—an "acre-inch"—is worth $25 to $30 an acre. Vigil, ARS agronomist David Nielsen, and ARS soil scientist Joseph Benjamin—both also at Akron—made this calculation by using 10-year average crop prices in equations they developed to relate crop yields to stored water levels. Four to six tillage passes to kill weeds result in a loss of 3 acre-inches of water over 14 months of fallow. Those six passes cost $24 to $48 an acre in fuel and labour costs. "Adding that to the cost of water lost, that’s $99 to $138 from your pocket," Vigil tells farmers.

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US Rice Farmer of the year uses Shelbourne Headers US Rice Farmer of the year uses Shelbourne Headers

In 2009, Durand Farm, located in St. Martin Parish, La., was presented the Outstanding Master Farmer Award. In 2010, this 1,150-acre progressive rice and crawfish farm, operated by brothers, Jeff, Greg and Conery (C.J.), was named the recipient of the Rice Farmer of the Year Award, sponsored by Rice Farming magazine and Syngenta.

All three brothers completed the Master Farmer Program and have each achieved the designation of a Certified Master Farmer. Jeff, Greg and C.J. strive to increase the efficiency and productivity of their rice and crawfish operation. Following are a few examples of what they do to keep Durand Farm up-to-date and viable.

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Harvest in full swing for wheat farmers

MORGAN COUNTY - Many wheat farmers across the Front Range started happily harvesting their crop this week. Most farms not hit by spring hail are producing good yields this year.

"It all kind of came together for us," Cary Wickstrom, a wheat farmer in Morgan County, said.

Wickstrom says the weather has cooperated from fall of last year on.

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Shelbourne Stripper Header one of the biggest innovations in ag during these past four decades.

Developed in Great Britain and later marketed in the U.S., the Shelbourne Reynolds stripper headers have had a significant impact on harvesting for farmers who value standing residue. The technology represented a major breakthrough in harvesting options, as have the more recent draper headers for combines and windrowers.

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Wheat stubble height impacts No-Till Row-Crop yields

No-tillers using a wheat/row crop/fallow rotation may find that row-crop yields in such a rotation are higher — in years with relatively normal weather — when the wheat-stubble height is taller.

Kansas State University research in western Kansas by Lucas Haag, agronomy graduate student, and Alan Schlegel, agronomist-in-charge at the Southwest Research Extension Center at Tribune, Kan., has found that corn yields increased as stubble height increased.

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Harvesting Camelina with a Stripper Head

Camelina is an oilseed crop that can be used to make biodiesel, it also has high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, over 50% of the fatty acids in cold pressed Camelina oil are polyunsaturated, the oil is very rich in natural antioxidants, the by products can be used as a very protein rich feed source for cattle.

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Pleased with Stripper Header

The Ireland Brothers, of Martin, S.D., get more out of no-till by using stripper headers on their combines.

With the Shelbourne Reynolds headers that strip wheat kernels out heads and leave the straw standing upright, they can operate combines at higher speeds and in tougher conditions than when using straight cut headers that put all the straw through the combine. That increases their combining capacity.

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Farmers' ability to manage soil is key as climate fluctuates Farmers' ability to manage soil is key as climate fluctuates

BROADVIEW — On an afternoon when the air presses against his face like a hot iron, Mitch Auer grabs a shovel from his pickup and lumbers into an old wheat stand that hasn’t seen 3 inches of moisture this year.

It’s the last day in July and the National Weather Service has just confirmed that Yellowstone County is experiencing one of its hottest summers ever. A couple of weeks earlier, the same meteorologists were declaring the first six months of the 2012 the county’s driest on record. The misery in farm country is palpable across the southern third of Montana, with multiple counties seeking disaster declarations for drought, fire, or both, which makes what Auer unearths remarkable.

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Why cut when you can strip?

Crops such as high-value grass seed used to be a staple ingredient in the rotations on many Essex arable farms. But, as production practices were modernised, grass seed began to give way to other crops that are possibly more straightforward to grow and harvest.

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Prime beef from top-class ration Prime beef from top-class ration

A diet that includes ingredients ranging from potatoes and parsnips to oven chips sounds like one that would suit most stomachs. But it’s the beef cattle at C Read and Sons’ Suffolk farm that get to enjoy such a selection, as part of a TMR blended by a Shelbourne Reynolds Powermix Pro diet feeder. And the resulting beef meets the demanding specifications of a supermarket known for its discerning customers.

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Feeder forms part of veterinary unitís overhaul Feeder forms part of veterinary unitís overhaul

The dairy unit used to train students as part of one of the UK’s most respected veterinary schools has undergone a transformation over the past five years, with changes covering everything from new management to new infrastructure. At the same time, TMR feeding has become the responsibility of a Shelbourne Reynolds twin auger machine, taking the place of a paddle-type feeder.

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Consistent mix means quality cheese Consistent mix means quality cheese

Producing milk for cheesemaking demands consistency of constituents – and that in turn means consistency of ration is equally important. It’s for this reason that Suffolk dairy farmers and cheese producers Jason and Katharine Salisbury decided to switch to total mixed ration feeding, and to entrust a Shelbourne Reynolds Powermix to produce the TMR for their 40-head Guernsey herd.

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Diet feeder duo's different roles Diet feeder duo's different roles

There are two Shelbourne Reynolds Powermix machines on JF Temple and Son’s north Norfolk dairy unit, but only one is used for feeding the farm’s 98-head dairy herd and its followers. The other is permanently engaged in mixing materials for an anaerobic digester powering a gas engine which, in addition to supplying surplus power to the grid, generates electricity for the host farm, including the cheese-making venture it supports. With those AD materials sourced wholly from the farm’s cropping, dairy and cheese enterprises, the system provides an excellent example of self-sufficient farming. 

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Hinton St Mary, Dorset Hinton St Mary, Dorset

A dairy farm’s diet feeder must count as being the farm’s most used machine. No luxury of being parked for a few months under the barn alongside such seasonal implements as mowers or balers – the diet feeder is required to work every day of the year. And the demands on diet feeders can only become greater as dairy herds become progressively larger and adopt a permanent housing policy. The feeding regime employed by Hinton St Mary Estate for its 400-cow dairy herd – plus 225 followers – is typical perhaps of modern dairy farm looking to maximise production and profitability. A Velcourt farm managed by Mark Harvey, the farmed area runs to about 1750 acres. Of this, 1000 acres is used for arable crop production and the remainder for grass and forage maize.

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Gordon Mitchell, Carlisle Gordon Mitchell, Carlisle

The ability of the Shelbourne Powermix Pro to produce a good accurate, quality mix was not in question, for one Cumbria dairy farmer – it was the feed out elevator that was the real attraction. For Gordon Mitchell it was the feed out elevator on the Shelbourne Reynolds Powermix Pro 16m Diet Feeder that clinched the deal, he insists. "I had no doubt that the mixer could cope with work we wanted it to do but it was essential it could deliver the feed into our trough feeding system," he says. "And that required an elevator." Based at Ranghton Head, Dalston, Carlisle, Mr Mitchell and his brother farm about 1200 acres which is spread between two farms. The main enterprise on both farms is milk production with one herd numbering 200 cows and the other 280 cows.

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Richard Park, Kendal, Cumbria Richard Park, Kendal, Cumbria

Low Sizergh farm, near Kendal, just south of the Lake District National Park, is a busy place – not just because there are 150 cows which need to be milked three times a day, but also because there is a farm shop and tea room which draws in over 150,000 visitors a year.

In charge of the farm, is Richard Park who exudes an energy and enthusiasm for his dairy herd that overcomes all suggestion that three times a day milking can be pretty demanding.

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Aldbourne Chase Farm, Marlborough, Wilts Aldbourne Chase Farm, Marlborough, Wilts

A high fibre content is now considered to be important part of a diet if feed efficiency is to be maximised. As such, it is essential that a diet feeder can process straw so that it becomes an integral part of the ration

The beef enterprise on Aldbourne Chase Farms managed by David Armstrong involves the running of 150 pedigree South Devons and 90 Angus x Holstein suckler cows.

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Peter and Robert Fare, Kirkham, Lancs Peter and Robert Fare, Kirkham, Lancs

The purchase of a Shelbourne Reynolds Powermix Popular diet feeder has created new opportunities for one Lancs-based dairy farm.

Peter and Robert Fare – a father and son team who run a 110-cow dairy herd near Kirkham, Lancashire – clearly believe that to get the best performance from their cows requires care, compassion and attention to detail. And it is a formula that appears to be working well.

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Furtho Manor Farm, Milton Keynes Furtho Manor Farm, Milton Keynes

Having a mixer wagon capable of producing properly formulated rations which enable livestock to fully utilise the nutritional value of feed is clearly essential – particularly when the cost of feed is now so high.

A member of a family partnership, Robin Welton runs a herd of 270 cows at Furtho Manor Farm, which is near Old Stratford, Milton Keynes. The farm itself runs to 300 acres of which just over a third is used for the production of forage maize with remainder down to grass.

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3C & ME 3C & ME

When four dairy farmers wanted to cut their feeding costs they decided to purchase a mixer wagon and a tractor and share the running costs between them. Should you ever come face to face with a farming co-operative called the 3C & ME don't hesitate to inquire how it acquired such a name. You will be told, hopefully, that it is formed by taking the first letter of four Wiltshire villages - Calstone, Cherhill, Compton Bassett and Mile Elm. And before you can ask why, some one will tell you that in each of these four villages there is a member of the co-operative who has a dairy farm and has a part share in the running of a mixer wagon. 3C & ME was formed four years ago by a group of dairy farmers who were anxious to reduce their feed costs - not by what they fed their cows but with what they used to feed them with.

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Evershot Farms, Dorset, UK.

As dairy herds get bigger their reliance on mixer wagons to provide accurately mixed rations becomes ever greater. Further more they need to be able to do it day after day. We take a look at two of Velcourt's Dorset-based dairy farms which opted to use large twin auger machines. Maximising milk yields - but not at the expense of extra cost - is the aim of many of the UK's dairy farms. It is a message not lost on two of Velcourt's dairy units based in Dorset - one at Melbury and the other an hour's drive away in Abbotsbury.

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Glympton Farms, Glympton, Reading, Berkshire, UK Glympton Farms, Glympton, Reading, Berkshire, UK

The Glympton herd of pedigree Aberdeen Angus cattle is well known in the world of cattle breeding. But such respect does not come without a great deal of skilled selective breeding, top class management and attention to matters of the diet The word immaculate is not a word to be used loosely or indeed where words with greater accuracy can be employed - such as neat and tidy. But for the stock section of Glympton Farms, with its acres of concrete, modern cattle housing and cosseted inhabitants, immaculate on this occasion would appear to be an entirely appropriate word.

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Maple Durhum Estate, Reading, Bershire, UK Maple Durhum Estate, Reading, Bershire, UK

Let's face it, adding ingredients to a mixer wagon to a required weight is not easy. Mistakes can happen and, as a result, milk yields can fall. For a large dairy unit near Reading it was a problem that needed solving. While it is everyone's intention to add the correct amount of each ingredient to a mixer wagon when creating a diet, the reality is that mistakes happen and, for dairy rations at least, milk yield can be adversely affected.

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ES Burroughs and Son, Oaklands Farm, Aldeby, Beccles, Suffolk ES Burroughs and Son, Oaklands Farm, Aldeby, Beccles, Suffolk

High input costs makes Powermix Pro even more valuable

As a family-run business with limited resources and staff, David Burroughs is always looking to fine tune his 1,000-acre dairy and arable enterprise at Aldeby, near Beccles, Suffolk. Run in partnership with his son Jamie and sister Margaret, the farm has spent the past few years considering how best to manage rising input costs.

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Wyke Farms, Wyke Champflower, Bruton, Somerset Wyke Farms, Wyke Champflower, Bruton, Somerset

Powermix ticks all the boxes for famous cheese producer

Cheesemaking in Somerset has always been a familiar tradition, especially in the famous Cheddar region. However, today there are very few producers with less than ten left in the area. When producing one of the UK’s favorite farmhouse cheddars, Wyke Farms rely on the latest technology and machinery, which includes two Shelbourne Powermix Pro Express feeders to keep their dairy herd fed.

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Holkham Farming Company Limited, Egmere, Walsingham, Norfolk Holkham Farming Company Limited, Egmere, Walsingham, Norfolk

True local beef kept well fed by Powermix Pro Express 11

You cannot head to North Norfolk without seeing a sign for Holkham Hall, and this famous eighteenth-century house is still home to Coke family, also better known as the Earls of Leicester. Today, as part of the Holkham Estate, Lord Leicester owns some 25,000 acres surrounding the impressive house.

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Howell Richards, Cwrt Malle, Carmarthenshire Howell Richards, Cwrt Malle, Carmarthenshire

Large Welsh dairy onto third Shelbourne feeder

For Camarthenshire dairy farmer Howell Richards, based at Cwrt Malle, opting for a Shelbourne feeder wagon is now a routine rather than a choice it seems. Now on his third machine, a 25 cubic metre Powermix Express, Mr Richards has run another identical-sized Shelbourne feeder, and previous to that a 22 cubic metre version. This is based on a policy of changing every two years, as feeders on the 1,800-head unit work every day of the year without fail.

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Giles Pursey, Somerset Giles Pursey, Somerset

“I always say to anyone in hedge trimming who’s considering a new machine that if they haven’t tried a Shelbourne, they should.”

That’s Somerset contractor Giles Pursey’s advice, and with almost every make of hedge trimmer having been through his hands, he’s well-qualified to offer advice. Putting 900 hours/year of hedge work on his tractor and its Shelbourne Reynolds HD760T Powerblade partner, he works within a 15-mile radius of his base in the village of Street, Somerset  cutting hedges for around 70 local farms.

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Tom Stockil, North Yorkshire Tom Stockil, North Yorkshire

Reliability and build quality were the key reasons Tom Stockil and his father Michael chose to break a long-held relationship with their hedge trimmer supplier. Having found those qualities by switching to a Shelbourne Reynolds Powerblade VFRT, they have been able to cut the trimmer fleet for their contracting business from three machines to two, while maintaining the same amount of work.

“We cut the hedges on around 15-16,000 acres each year within a ten mile radius of home,” explains Tom, who is based at Markington, near Harrogate.

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Mark Chapman, Cornwall Mark Chapman, Cornwall

It’s a mark of the finish left behind by his pair of Shelbourne Reynolds Powerblade hedge trimmers that, when working for his local council, Cornish contractor Mark Chapman is often to match up rough grass areas to those cut by their mower teams.   

“They’re happy that there’s very little difference in the finish left between the mowers and our machines on rough grass areas,” says Mark, who runs an HD775 VFRT alongside a 656.

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VFRT depended on to help meet new hedge regulations VFRT depended on to help meet new hedge regulations

Summer 2015’s change in hedge cutting regulations, delaying the task’s permissible start point by a month from its old date of August 1, looks likely to increase pressure on farmers and contractors this season. Being forced to pack more work into a shorter period, they may also need to find other ways to get at hedges that were formerly accessible by running on the stubble between the end of one crop and the beginning of another, but are now difficult to get at because the land may well have been cultivated and drilled.

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Contractor's first Powerblade makes way for another Contractor's first Powerblade makes way for another

With a big ploughing and combination drilling workload in autumn and spring, Leicestershire contractor Colin Clayton has to fit his third main contract service, hedge trimming, into the four months between November and February, plus a brief fortnight-long window in late summer. In that time he has to meet the demands of as many as 80 customers across the county.

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Manufacturer independence appeals to Norfolk hedging contractor Manufacturer independence appeals to Norfolk hedging contractor

With a big ploughing and combination drilling workload in autumn and spring, Leicestershire contractor Colin Clayton has to fit his third main contract service, hedge trimming, into the four months between November and February, plus a brief fortnight-long window in late summer. In that time he has to meet the demands of as many as 80 customers across the county.

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Waldersey Farms Waldersey Farms

When Derek Russell goes to work cutting river banks and dykes everyday he literally “looks forward” to an enjoyable day’s work ahead on his Shelbourne Reynolds hedgecutter.

 

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Huw Lincoln, Haywards Heath, Sussex (HD70T) Huw Lincoln, Haywards Heath, Sussex (HD70T)

“I know I’m a bit of stickler for perfection when it comes to hedge trimming, but when you do the job for a living the finished hedge becomes your shop window.”  Sharp blades are considered to be important by Mr. Lincoln if good clean cuts are to be made. The blade is sharpened from the curved top side.    

Mr. Lincoln says  "Proportional electronic controls help to turn in prize-winning performances."

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Tim Frizzel, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, UK, (HD62VFR) Tim Frizzel, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, UK, (HD62VFR)

Tim Frizzel was adamant – he was not going back to using a hedge cutter that required him to spend all his time looking over his left shoulder.With that proviso registered, when his Econ mid-mounted machine had reached the age and condition when the word ‘tired’ was the polite way of describing it, he was keen to replace it with a hedge cutter that could place the flail head where he could see it. Based at Sturminster Newton in Dorset, Mr Frizzel has been cutting hedges for more years than he says he cares to remember – and clearly long enough to remember the aching necks that occur when operating a rear mounted machine. All of which is now history because his latest hedge cutter is a Shelbourne Reynolds Powerblade 6.2m VFR – variable forward reach.

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Michael Tomlinson, Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, UK, (HD62VFR) Michael Tomlinson, Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, UK, (HD62VFR)

Hedge trimmer design has taken another step forward with the introduction of the variable forward reach system. We visited the first user of Shelbourne Reynold’s innovative 6.2m Powerblade VFR and discovered a success.There can be few better views in the countryside than a well trimmed hedge – its sides uniform, top level and the surrounding vegetation neatly cut.Of the skills used in an industry which now places more emphasis on speed than straight ploughing, hedge trimming must count as one of the last remaining tasks where operator skill can be truly appreciated.And it is one which contractor Mike Tomlinson takes very seriously. Based near Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, Mr Tomlinson has taken the art of hedge trimming to new levels - levels that have earned him the respect of his customers.

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Pete Rideout, Chettle, Dorset, UK (HD70T) Pete Rideout, Chettle, Dorset, UK (HD70T)

"One of the most annoying thing about hedge cutting is that after concentrating hard to create a good level, even cut, you look back and see the odd uncut branch sticking up," says Pete Rideout.

And it’s an opinion you can have some sympathy with – the way a hedge looks after it is cut is usually considered to be a reflection on the ability of the operator, not the machine used to cut it.Which is why, he insists, he purchased his first Shelbourne Reynolds hedge cutter a few years ago and, following the success with that one, why he recently purchased a second machine.

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Mark Harvey, Hinton St Mary Estate, Dorset, UK (HD70T) Mark Harvey, Hinton St Mary Estate, Dorset, UK (HD70T)

There are over 36 miles of hedges to cut each year on the land which forms Hinton St Mary Estate in Dorset. And the intention is to cut every mile, every year.

Managed by Velcourt under the guidance of farm manager Mark Harvey, the farmed area at Hinton St Mary Estate runs to some 1750 acres of which 1000 acres is down to arable cropping with the remainder under grass and forage maize for the Estate’s 400-cow dairy herd and its 225 followers.

"With that distance of hedge row, you can imagine that our field sizes are not that big," says Mr Harvey. "The average is about 22 acres which is a bit on the tight side for some of the larger cultivators and combines we operate."

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Brian Archer, Derbyshire Brian Archer, Derbyshire

A switch from feeding with a forage box in favour of the first diet feeder to be bought by a Derbyshire dairy farm has helped reduce rumen problems and boost butterfat levels among its high-performing British Friesians, despite an unchanged ration. 

 

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The Hall family, Huddersfield The Hall family, Huddersfield

Difficulties getting sufficient straw into dry cows to maximise rumen fill have been overcome on a Yorkshire dairy unit by switching from a Keenan diet feeder to a Shelbourne Reynolds twin-auger model.

The Powermix Twin 22 purchased by the Hall family, with twin augers and a 22 cu m capacity, today single-handedly feeds 700 milking Holsteins, dry cows, followers and black and white bulls.

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