Heating and Solar energy
We have invested heavily in our business over the last 8 months. We believe that we are the first conference centre in Herefordshire to be powered by solar panels and a Biomass Boiler that uses waste wood from our farm and business and other local producers and also uses the straw from our farms.
The use of the biomass has slashed our reliance on oil from 100% to less than 10% – if we need it at all. This not only makes for a very eco-friendly conference, but also if you want to off-set your carbon mileage from your car we can offer that service with the 70 acres of orchards that have been planted in recent years on the farm. This will help your meeting to be a truly green occasion.
On the farm we use SOYL Mapping. This helps us to have a more targeted approach to the use of fertilisers. This relatively new process starts off with a quad bike which takes soil samples from quadrants in the field. The results are then analysed and put onto a digital map format. This is transferred onto a memory card and relayed to a computer in the Tractor cab. The end result means that we are more precise with our approach to potash and phosphate applications, rather than taking a blanket approach and spreading it where the crop doesn’t need it. The next step will be to move towards Nitrogen as well.
Recycling Farmyard manures
We use our farmyard manure (FYM) on the fields and also a lot of chicken litter. For some people this may prove to be a rather pungent smell, but it soon passes. The major advantage is that it can be applied to the standing crop in early Spring, when the crop needs it and when it can readily absorb the nitrogen that is available from it. Another major benefit of using FYM and chicken litter is that it greatly reduces our reliance on oil-based fertilisers – not completely, but every little helps.