The East of England Showground has been a hive of activity since LAMMA 2016. February and March proved particularly difficult with ground repairs limited to repairing road way edges, some wheel track levelling and some seeding where ground conditions eventually allowed. Fortunately this given us the opportunity to develop an extensive plan for the year ahead to improve our grass and soil, a key message from many of the exhibitors at LAMMA.
Compaction is a huge issue for us and one that we spend a lot of time on, but with a number of important events in March and April compounded with the particularly wet spring we have had, it is tricky. The type of soil we have and its ability to go from porridge to concrete in a few days has led us to take a scientific approach. After a conversation with Ian Robertson of Sustainable Soil Management at LAMMA, we have conducted soil analysis and with Ian’s advice we are going to be treating the soil with a physical, chemical and biological approach, to correct imbalances and improve the resilience of our soils.
A Kubota tractor has joined our fleet to provide more appropriate power, in a compact package to protect our soils. The M6060 joined us at the end of March and has been busy mowing, fertilising and other general grass care since it arrived. It is proving very popular with the staff and has certainly given us a lot more freedom to carry out operations. Thanks to Kubota UK for your assistance.
We are eagerly awaiting the delivery of a hose reel irrigator form Greencrop Irrigation. The order has literally just been placed and is the first part of a more extensive irrigation network we hope to develop over the coming years. We have a number of Equestrian events on site during the summer making a controlled watering system integral to getting the surface right. We hope to back this up with weather and soil moisture monitoring equipment so that we can not only use the water appropriately but also demonstrate to visitors to the showground the latest technology available and importantly, responsible water use.
We are working hard to get the site back in order and improved for all the events we host on the showground throughout the year. It is challenging, just like farming, with the weather affecting us every step of the way. Events will go on regardless of the weather forecast which means we have to react quickly and sometimes accept that we just have to be patient and wait for that opportunity.
LAMMA is an event that we are proud to host and an important event for us to see the latest technologies that will benefit the showground and that we can share with our Society members to improve their businesses. We will be keeping you posted of developments at the showground over the coming months and we look forward to working with LAMMA and enjoying the improvements on site.