Winter Linseed is sown August / September and has an early, hassle-free harvest in mid July/early August often before Rape. Harvesting Winter Linseed in long summer days is straightforward and totally different to harvesting Spring Linseed in September. Winter Linseed is Winter hardy – experience has shown that crops can survive temperatures of -14 °C without snow cover. Where Winter Linseed crops have not survived, Oats and Beans have failed too.
Winter Linseed has good resistance to lodging, which ensures an easy harvest and helps to maintain yields. Winter Linseed has a yield potential of up to 3.75 tonnes/hectare and properly managed crops should achieve 2.5 – 3.0 tonnes/hectare
Winter 2012 saw only 2% of the area failed when subjected to temperatures as low as -17 °C
Most growers were astonished by the powers of recovery of Winter Linseed with these crops going to on to produce in the main respectable yields.
The first crop of Winter Linseed, harvested and collected, yielded 2.83 tonnes/hectare!
Why Grow Winter linseed?
It is an alternative to Winter Beans or Oats. Beans and Oats are no longer cheap to grow and do not have the margin potential of Winter linseed. Increases in herbicide cost, as well as less reliability in controlling weeds such as volunteer Rape, Charlock and Grass weeds make these crops more risky.
- It solves many of the problems associated with excessive over cropping of Rape
- Reduces build-up of Rape as a weed
- Allows excellent control of Runch, Charlock and Cranesbill
- Halts declining Rape yields from club root and virus infections
- It is not a target for cabbage stem flea beetle as it is not a brassica
- Presents no slug problems in subsequent Wheat crops
- Rabbits and Deer do not find Winter Linseed attractive to graze. Some test grazing will take place but no large scale feeding
Rape is widely grown because it is harvested early, allowing early establishment of following Wheat crops with optimum timeliness and soil conditions. Winter linseed also provides these benefits, but without the slug risk associated with Rape.
- Linseed naturally contains the highest level of Omega 3 of any seeds
- Varieties are screened for Omega 3 content
- Utilising the Omega 3 in Linseed for animal feed is now a huge market in Europe
- ForFarmers are marketing a linseed based high Omega 3 animal feed called Lintec
- For more information on feeds high in Omega 3 visit www.forfarmers.co.uk