Our 100-acre farm is managed following results from our research, putting science into practice. We are passionate about farming our food alongside wildlife and being part of Glastir Advanced agri-environment scheme enables us to viably link our farming with conservation.
We work with Torth y Tir community-supported bakery who grow heritage varieties of wheat across the farm, with strips of wildflowers and wild bird seed mixes blooming next to the crops. The wheat is milled, made into bread by Torth y Tir and is often served in Grub Kitchen. We sow nitrogen-fixing green manures and cover crops under the wheat, which have the added benefits of smothering weeds, providing resources for pollinators and improving the structure and fertility of the soil.
Our cattle graze the arable fields when they are not growing crops to give the fields a break from production. Their dung is broken down by dung beetles and other dung fauna, fertilising the soils without the need for chemical fertilisers. We try to keep the cattle out year-round by planting crops that they can graze in the winter and we supplement their feed in the winter with our wildflower meadow hay!
We plant up to 100 m of native hedgerow trees each year and have, to date, dug ten ponds across the farm to encourage more wildlife to visit us. Our farm is now acting as a busy wildlife corridor between the Dowrog Common and the St Davids Airfield Heaths, two wonderful Sites of Special Scientific Interest that meet the northwest and south east borders of the farm. For our work joining these two habitats, we were awarded the 2015 Plantlife International Meadow Maker of the Year award for Wales and the road between us and the Dowrog Common has now been made an official ‘toad crossing’ site!