Since March 2020 we have been posting a weekly update of what is happening on the farm.  Here are some of the things we have covered

No 18 -  15.7.20

Making hay. The JCB and the Fendt get serviced before harvest. Kevin Thorne explains the bee keeping year and showes us a hive he has re homed. 

No 17 -  4.7.20

Weed surfing. Our first organic field reaches 21 years old. New trailer arrives. Paul carries on digging ditches. We have our annual H & S roundup. Robert weighs the sheep and we find the most amazing blanket of pyramidal orchids. 

No. 16 - 21.6.20

Jimmy Doherty is making a programme for Channel 4 about polinating insects and comes to the farm to talk to John about Organic farming and its effect on insect polutations.  


No 15 - 13.6.20

The twin flock of sheep move to new clover pastures.  The crops and weeds really get growing after the rain. Its time to clean last years beans in the store and there is the first of the beautiful pyramid orchids oon our field verges. 

No 14 - 7.6.20 

The orphan lambs are given a new pen. We find a swarm of bees that Kevin Thorn moves comb by comb into a hive. The tractor tyres are changed from narrow to fat and we cutlivate our summer fallow experiment. Finally we get some much needed rain. 

No. 13 - 1.6.20

Blisteringly hot and dry. Rufus gets trained up during lockdown. We have mice to control. We have lorries of porridge oats going to Northern Ireland and we are trialing some inter row planting to try and take the risk out of growing beans.




No. 12 - 24.5.20

 Alice explains our managment of the SSSI ancient coppiced woodland as Matthew comes to collect the timber he cut last year ready to feed the farm boiler in the winter and make us less dependant on oil where possible.  We are desparate for rain althogh the crops and the sheep are still growing. The ewes have been sheared. 

No 11 - 15.5.20 

Cameron shows us how to shear sheep.  The orphan lambs are getting bigger and John is busy with his bean trial experiments. We have last year's wheat going off the farm and we look at the paperwork that has to accompany every load. The weeds are growing fast so we are getting one of our armoury against weeds ready - the mower.


No 10 -  2.5.20

Lambs get bigger and one of the orphans goes on a road trip. Robert explains why we have some black lambs and explains how we number them. Finally we get some RAIN. Much needed and we watch as it finally soakes down to the seed.  Our ancient hawthorn tree falls down with the weight of blossom and rain. We do isolating combine service and new recruit Sam explains what he has to do to pass his loader test.  

No 9 - 26.4.20

 We take a tour of the new born lambs and Cameron (with his Covid haircut) explains how to check them, tag them and ring their tails.  Alice explains how our out-door organic sheep system works with these New Zealand Romney sheep. Peter clears up old hay so the grass can grow and the winter and spring crops need weeding already. We have a new full time team member - Welcome Sam!

No 8 - 18.4.20

Checking the twins lambs and Robert getting in the swing of the lambing season. Redrilling a failed bean field from the wet winter and the newly drilled spring crops are really getting going. Hoeing the weeds out of the winter sown wheat and planting clover between the rows as a mulch. We have a few lamb orphans and one got attacked by a fox but they are learning to drink from the milk dispenser. 

No 7 - 12.4.20

It is getting hotter and dryer. We have a few orphan lambs and a pop up hospital. As we race to finish John has a blow out on the main road but the lovely police arrive.  We finsih drilling - enough to make 8.5. m pints of lager (barley) 28m bowls of possidge (oats) and 26 millions sausages (feed beans) Thank you NHS for having our back so we can carry on working. 

No. 6  - 8.4.20

Long days cultivating and drilling. Time to make the lamb pop up hospital. Alice explains why we have sheep and the role they play in our crop rotation. Tractors break as we hurry to finish. A ewe gets stuck on her back and early twin lambs are beginning to be born.  

No 5 - 4.4.20

The soil is as hard as a road after the rain and then the sun. John explains cultivations and why we use Ad Blue to make our tractors more enironmentally friendly. We have wheat leaving the farm and puctunred tyres in the field. Early twin lambs are born. 

No. 4 - 31.3.20

Greg has a really bad tooth and all dentists are shut so Rufus comes to the rescue and gets rolling. We are mad drilling, the clocks go back so the days are long. The sheep are fat and shy and poised to start giving birth. 

NO. 1 - 25.3.20

We are bringing the farm to you. Really busy after a record breaking wet winter. Loads of seeds ready to plant and a new cultivator arrives from the Chech Republic. 

No. 2 - 27.3.20

Finally we can start drilling and we get the fuel to the fields and have two drills going at once. The combine has mice nesting in it! 

No. 3 - 28.3.20

Fuel is in short supply and we are using 1000 litres a day. John is busy getting a seed bed and Peter shows us how we plant (drill) the seed.  Wheat planted in the winter looks good and the sky larks are singing. 

Print | Sitemap
© Shimpling Park Farm - Shimpling Park Farm, Shimpling, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP29 4HY - T: 01284 827317