Alex Wilcox wins gold for spring barley in 2019 YEN awards

Leslie Berger

Best Field Yield 2019: Gold Award

Sponsor: Hutchinsons

Location: Norfolk

Variety: Laureate

Yield: 10.7t/ha

Best % of potential yield: 72% of 14.9t

Alex farms in partnership with his wife at Hill Farm on the edge of the Fens near Downham Market.  Trading as A&J Wilcox Alex has an informal relationship with MJDenham to share equipment, repairs and part time labour. 

MJDenham farms 60ha of rented land and A&J Wilcox farm 140ha of rented land of which 100ha is a Norfolk County Council Holding, and the rest comprised of other rental agreements.  Alex does all the management, agronomy, marketing, and storage as well as looking after the arable operations for MJDenham.  Mr Denham manages the fertiliser spreading and cultivations across the entire acreage.

The overall farm acreage covers 200ha of varying silty clay loam soils with rotations varying around Winter Wheat, Winter Oilseed Rape, Spring Wheat, Spring Barley, Spring Beans, and Sugar.

Alex aims to profitably farm his high potential soils in a sustainable way to drive continuous improvement of soil health through the application of organic manures and the adoption of intelligent tillage systems.  

Benefits of YEN involvement 

Alex attributes his success in the YEN competition to paying attention to detail in terms of agronomy and timing of operations in order to get the most out of a very high potential site plus a large slice of luck.  He has found participation in YEN to be a great way to exchange valuable information between like-minded growers.