Weekend weather: showers and sunny spells
After some excellent silage making conditions during the week, the weekend is expected to be mostly showery.

A little hazy sunshine on Friday, but generally cloudy. There will be showers along the southwest coast this morning, with others forming along the east coast. These will become more widespread on Friday afternoon, some heavy in Atlantic coastal counties, with a slight risk of thunder. Top temperatures 14°C to 18°C.

On Friday night, showers will become confined to Atlantic coastal districts overnight. Misty elsewhere with a mix of clear periods and some cloudy periods. Lowest temperatures 5°C to 9°C in light to moderate northwest breezes.

Saturday

Some bright or sunny spells on Saturday, but cloudy periods at times also. Some showers about too, a few heavy, with a slight risk of thunder. Highs of 13°C to 17°C. Light to moderate northwest breezes will be fresh on parts of the Atlantic seaboard.

Showers on Saturday evening will die out gradually after dark, so that much of Saturday night should be dry, with some clear spells developing. Lowest temperatures 6°C to 9°C in light northwesterly breezes.

Sunday

Sunday will be a day of bright or sunny spells and occasional showers, some heavy in the afternoon. Top temperatures of 13°C to 17°C. Moderate northwesterly breezes will be fresh in some western coastal areas.

Sunday night will be mostly dry, with clear spells and any evening showers soon dying out. A cool night with lows of 4°C to 7°C in light northwesterly breezes.

Monday

Monday is likely to be mostly dry and bright, with sunny spells in most places. Some scattered showers, mainly over Ulster, but most places dry. Top temperatures 13°C to 17°C. Northwesterly breezes will be mainly light, with some sea breezes developing along south and east coasts. Cool overnight with clear spells and lows of 3°C to 6°C.

Management notes

  • In this week's beef management notes, Matthew Halpin discusses breeding progress in the suckler herd and drafting young bulls for slaughter.
  • In dairy, Aidan Brennan asks if now is the best time to cut silage, how much meal to feed young calves and if it’s too dry to sow grass seeds.
  • In sheep, Darren Carty takes a look at tagging lambs, scald and shearing safety.
  • And in tillage, the recent heat is likely to drive on crop growth stages making it important for T2 sprays on winter wheat, final fungicides on winter barley and a range of inputs on spring crops.
    The farmer's daily wrap: farm fatality, African swine fever and bees
    Here is your news round-up of the five top farming stories and weather outlook for Saturday 24 May.

    Weather forecast

    Met Éireann has said that it will be rather cloudy at first on Saturday, with patches of light rain or drizzle, mainly affecting the western half of the country.

    Cloud is forecast to start to break later in the morning, with spells of sunshine for the afternoon and evening.

    However, Atlantic coastal areas will remain quite dull and damp.

    It looks set to be a humid day, with top temperatures ranging from 16°C to 20°C in light to moderate southwesterly breezes.

    In the news

  • There is a mixed bag of weather ahead for the weekend, with showers, sunshine and highs of 20°C.
  • Minister warning to holiday-makers over African swine fever: “Don’t bring back your sandwich; don’t bring back your salami.”
  • A man in his 60s has died following an accident on a farm in Aughnacliffe, Co Longford.
  • Just 207t of skimmed milk powder (SMP) remains in the EU’s intervention measure.
  • And Irish citizens are being asked to report sightings of bees in a nationwide online survey.
  • Coming up this Saturday

  • Good week/bad week.
  • Free trailer marking against theft.
  • The latest from Newford Farm.
    Three-man race for ICSA president
    The Irish Cattle and Sheep Association (ICSA) will elect a new president in June.

    Three candidates are in the running to become the next president of the ICSA following the close of nominations on Friday evening.

    In alphabetical order, these candidates are as follows:

  • Hugh Farrell, Cavan.
  • Dermot Kelleher, Cork west.
  • Edmond Phelan, Waterford.
  • The election will take place in Portlaoise on the evening of Thursday 27 June.

    Read more

    Family-owned feedlots entitled to compensation – ICSA

    Brexit beef compensation: what farmer groups want

    Watch: vegetable growers turn on the irrigation systems
    O’Shea Farms and Hughes Farming have both turned on the irrigation pumps this week.

    In order to combat dry conditions, O’Shea Farms and Hughes Farming were irrigating crops this week.

    Julian Hughes says he has never irrigated as early as May before and that he has two reels out at the moment, but will be putting another two out next week if there is no rain in the meantime.

    “We have a 30mm soil moisture deficit,” he said.

    “The fear of a repeat of 2018 is palpable in the yard at home, there’s dust everywhere.”

    In a normal year, he said that he would irrigate the crops in July and August.

    But so far he has put 30mm on parsnips and followed up five days later with another 30mm.

    “You could ask are we selecting higher-yielding varieties that need more inputs. But I’m using the same variety with the last 20 years.

    "It’s just very dry. We need 50mm over three days to get things balanced up.”

    Agronomist with O’Shea farms Tom Murray said that it would be normal for them to be irrigating at this time of year. They grow carrots in Piltown and Carrick-on-Suir.

    “We’re putting on 12mm to 15mm, not any more than that. We don’t want to wash away any pre-emergence spray,” Tom said.

    “There has been years before when we needed to irrigate to encourage germination. But the soil is starting to dry out and we want to be ahead of it.”

    Read more

    Fields drying up as some farmers wait for rain

    Flood risk farmers urged to make submissions

    Crops remain in good condition but have become more variable