Footprint Farmer Pádraig Connery in Co Waterford is disappointed he doesn’t have more spring barley grown this year due to the good performance of the crop in recent years.

However, it is the way the rotation has worked out this year.

Farming outside Villierstown, Co Waterford, Padraig has increased the average yields of his spring barley crop from 3.6 tonnes/acre (t/ac) in 2016 and 2017 up to 4t/ac in 2021 and 2022.


Pádraig puts the 20% yield increase down to a number of factors:

  • The use of cover crops, which reduces nutrient losses, as well as pests and disease burdens.
  • Using a paddle roller between ploughing and sowing to consolidate the seedbed.
  • A new corn drill, which has increased the sowing accuracy in terms of seeding rates and seed placement.
  • In addition to this, Pádraig also attributes this increase to tailoring his fertiliser plans to soil sample results, increasing his focus on lime spreading and improved husbandry as a whole; for example, ensuring he's spraying the crops on time.

    Pádraig purchased a new fertiliser spreader in October.

    Pádraig also purchased a new fertiliser spreader in October.

    The spreader is equipped with automatic calibration and flow rate control, which ensures accurate and even spreading and so serves as a financial saving, as there is no excess fertiliser being spread.