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By The Barn

Angela Sargent

11 Mar 2020

Brimstone butterflies glowing against early bright green leaves are a wonderful spring sight, if you’re lucky enough to spot one this March. The caterpillars feed on buckthorn and Alder and you might spot them along roadsides and hedges.

When out walking, now is the month to spot hares racing and boxing in the open fields - this is the time they come together (being a naturally solitary animal) to breed. Persecuted by coursing, in which big money is invested, in the more eastern counties, the hare is declining in some areas. Because of successful police action in Lincolnshire, it has driven the practise further afield and a lot of damage is done to farmland at the same time.

Much of our pasture has begun to grow, although some will take time to recover from the autumn/winter wet weather and farmers will be fertilising and rolling where they can, giving the tender growth some much needed tlc and feed.

Grass is an important crop - the newer varieties being much more nutritious for high yielding livestock - full of energy converted from sunshine, eaten by animals and converted into milk or muscle. We are so good at growing grass in this country - we have ideal weather and a lot of land that cannot grow anything else.

Grass varieties can outgrow themselves and then it’s time to plough them up and resow, what we call a ‘ley’. Arable crops do well when they follow a grass ley.

Follow angela on twitter @bythebarn

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