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Intelligent Farming

Updated: Nov 29, 2023

I am sure you are wondering why I refer to what I do as ‘Intelligent Farming rather than one of the myriad of other names that are bandied around these days. We have Regenerative Farming, Organic Farming, Restorative Farming to name just three and as good as these causes are they do tend to pigeon hole you into a way of growing that supports the system rather than your farm. I have a strong belief that I need to do what the plant needs [and] what the soil needs when it needs it rather than working to a diary of system. I admit that

this does mean that you need a great deal of patience and a strong commitment, but as I have shown it does work.

As anyone who knows me will be quick to tell you is that I can get very angry, very quickly if I am referred to as a low input farmer as nothing could be farther from the truth. If a product or a soil management plan is needed then it gets it regardless of the cost. For instance this year has been wet at times so my soil has had more compaction than normal so I have decided to put a low impact lifter over all the fields so that I have the air in the soil that is necessary because as we all should know, air is the most important part of a soil structure otherwise everything else simply fails to work.

The commitment part is sticking to what I believe regardless of what is going on around me. Last year it was pointed out that I could probably miss a year of cover crops to make the most of the high wheat prices. I thought about this but stuck to my guns and as usual I had a 50% cover crop/spring cropping plan in place and even though it has been another horrendous weather year I am pleased with my results.

Intelligent farming also has a testing part to it so that each year I try one or two new things to see how they work and do they fit into my regime. It was through this suck it and see system that I found potassium silicate which has been a major part of my program which allows me to grow without PGRS, pesticides and most importantly fungicides. As the months go by the farmers who follow this web page will see how nutrition can be used wisely (Intelligently) to give a healthy crop that doesn’t need costly chemicals as an intervention so all of my work pays my wages and not those of the chemical companies.

The most important figure on the farm at the end of the year is the margin and

by growing using what is needed and no more can greatly increase margin provided that you find out which is the best way forward for your farm. It is your farm, your soil and your future so take responsibility for this rather than relying on salesmen to do it for you. I hope youenjoy the journey that you are joining me on.

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