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Hugh Black, Backboath, Forfar, Angus

Hugh Black farms in partnership with his parents and wife, Caroline. They farm 1130 acres in Angus with a rotation including wheat, oats, beans, potatoes, OSR and a plot of honeyberries.

Cover Cropping Philosophy

Hugh’s aim is to dramatically reduce his inputs to increase profitability and propagate microbes in order to deliver the nutrition required to maintain yield and plant health. A strong part of Hugh’s philosophy rests in the trust that microbes deliver complete nutrition to a crop better than ‘anything white from a bag’.

A true balance of nutrition

Using low salt index nutrition, such as fibrophos and certain digestates where required, coupled with a focused nitrogen program, Hugh serves up a true balance of nutrition to his crops. When done this way, a plant can photosynthesize up to 3 times more efficiently, in turn creating complete proteins which are little affected by disease.

To ensure longevity in such a system, cover crops ensure no soil is left bare so these plants are always feeding and nurturing the soil microbial workforce.

Combining these practices and Hugh’s foresight, creates an overall soil health and cropping margins that many would envy.

When done this way, a plant can photosynthesise up to 3 times more efficiently

Having used Dods of Haddington for the last 4 years, we have gained some invaluable knowledge and advice from the team while having a prompt delivery of tailored seed blends on time, every time. Trust, high purity standards and weed free seed is important when buying seed for cover crops and commercial crop production

Hugh Black, Backboath