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It's a fine haymaking summer!

Our EuCAN volunteer groups look after a number of small parcels of grassland in Dorset and Somerset which in the past have been cut and raked off each summer and the grass dumped. To avoid this terrible waste, last year we used the National Trust minibaler to make 53 small round bales from part of the Terrace Meadows SNCI in Sherborne (click here) but this year we have taken advantage of the fine weather to produce hay on the Terraces, the Quarr Local Nature reserve in Sherborne and on the Keep field in Hazelbury Bryan. This is very experimental and not necessarily economically viable but so far we have produced 104 small bales of pretty good hay and sold them off the field for £2 each. Click on each picture for an enlarged clearer image.

cutting the hay Sherborne Terraces

cutting the grass crop – it is easier to avoid anthills and orchids with brushcutters but obviously takes longer.

rowing up the hay Hazelbury Keep field July 2019

rowing up the hay in preparation for baling – see the beautifully light Transylvanian rakes in action!

Baling hay on Sherborne Terraces July 2019

Using an old style small baler on Sherborne Terraces

delivering the bales Sherborne Terraces July 2019

loading up to remove the bales from the site

grasscutting at Rugbourne Farm July 2019

The EuCAN Somerset volunteers clearing grass from the meadow at Rugbourne Farm near Timsbury. July 2019