The Estate farms approximately 2,500 acres, in house-growing, combinable and break crops.
- Wykeham’s tenanted farms focus on arable, dairy, sheep, beef and equestrian. Learn more in Wykeham Farms.
- The tenanted farms on the Danby Estate concentrate on dairy, beef and sheep.
- There are nearly 900 acres of forestry, including amenity woodland and commercial forestry. Find out more in Forestry, biomass and energy crops.
- Local contractors are employed for drilling and combining.
Making the most of technology
Satellites allow us to programme tractors to drive in a straight line to an accuracy of 2cm. They can then return on a set parallel track to avoid overlapping. Sensors on tractor cabs measure the light reflected from a crop, indicating how much nitrogen has already been absorbed. Combine harvester sensors measure the quantity of grain harvested, to produce a yield map of the field. All this helps reduce costs and improve yields.
The Estate has also invested in soil type analysis to create digital maps which can divide a field into similar soil types. Depending on how much nutrition is already in the field, it changes the amount of seed or fertilizer to be spread.
Adapting to threats
For 25 years, oilseed rape has been the main break crop in the Wykeham Farms crop rotation. Unfortunately the cabbage stem flea beetle meant up to 50% of the crop was being lost.
Grass leys and maize has taken its places in the rotation. As the Estates do not farm livestock, this has been in conjunction with neighbouring farmers. The grass helps control blackgrass on heavier soils. Plus the farmyard manure produced by the grass-grazing livestock can be spread to enrich fields intended for maize.
Caring for our environment
Farming cannot be carried out in isolation. Its success depends on the biodiversity of its locality, including flora and fauna. The Dawnay Estates philosophy is one of improving the land in its care for the benefit of generations to come. Read about the practical ways we do this in Environment.
Tenanted farm vacancies
All our farms are currently tenanted. However any vacancies will be advertised on this website in our Property section.