The monitor farms that have been selected in each of the main malting barley growing regions in the southeast will be the main focus for achieving the goals of the programme. These farms will be used for specific field based crop demos and also to examine cultivation practices, nutrient management and financial planning with the common aim of increasing the profitability of malting barley.
David Walsh – Kemmis
Location – Ballykilcavan, Stradbally, Co. Laois
David farms just outside the town of Stradbally in county Laois. David can be described as a specialist malting barley grower as it is the only crop grown on the farm. The crop on the farm is produced to supply the on-farm brewery which David has established in recent years. The soil on the farm is free draining and loamy which is ideal for producing quality malting barley crops.
Location – Ballybar, Carlow
David’s farm is situated on the outskirts of Carlow town. He grows a mixture of both spring and winter cereals including malting barley, wheat and oats. David uses a mixture of both plough and min-till cultivation systems for establishing his crops on the Kellistown series soils which cover up the vast majority of the farm. While this soil type is ideally suited for achieving both brewing and distilling grade barley crops, moisture retention can be a challenge during low rainfall periods.
Location – Tinnashrule, Ferns, Co. Wexford
John grows a mixture of winter feed and malting barley, spring malting barley and spring beans on his farm outside Ferns in county Wexford. The soil on the farm is the classic Clonroche series soil which has been producing quality crops of malting barley for generations. John has introduced beans into his rotation on the farm in recent years as continuous cereal production was having negative effects on soil health.
Declan O Hanlon
Location – Rochestown, New Ross, Co. Wexford
Spring malting barley and fodder beet make up the majority of Declan’s cropping along with a small quantity of winter wheat. The land that is farmed is fragmented which means a variety of different soil types are encountered however the Clonroache series would be the most prominent. Achieving quality specifications is challenging for Declan’s malting barley crops because of the high fertile fodder beet crops in the rotation.
Location – Saltmills, New Ross, Wexford
The most southerly monitor farmer, Vivion Tubritt, farms near the coastal village of Saltmills in south Wexford. Vivion grows winter and spring malting barley, winter wheat and oats, spring beans and potatoes. The establishment system varies from plough based to min-till depending on seedbed conditions at sowing with the majority of Vivion’s spring malting barley is established using the plough based system. The proximity of the farm to the coast poses challenges that other growers do not experience however the fine loamy soil is ideally suited for producing high yielding, high quality malting barley.