Met Éireann forecasts more sunshine after hottest day of year
Most hay-making should be finished by weekend and some farmers on second cut
Laurence Ward from Oldtown, Co Dublin, checks his hay and says it will be ready for bailing tomorrow. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons
Ice cream machines were buckling under the pressure yesterday as the country enjoyed its hottest day in years.
Exact temperatures are not available for yesterday yet, but “it was certainly up to 28 degrees in the south of the country”, he said. “The hottest day of the year, no question about it. The hottest day we’ve had since 2006, I’d say.”
Met Éireann later confirmed a temperature of 28.7 degrees at Oakpark, Co Carlow.
He said the middle of the country enjoyed temperatures in the mid-20s, while temperatures around the coast were slightly cooler.
“This warm hot sunny weather will continue for the rest of the week, certainly up to Friday. We think that over the weekend it will get cooler and cloudier, but there won’t be any break in the dry weather up to then.”
All good news for farmers who were, not surprisingly, making hay as the sun shone.
With the continuing good forecast most of the hay-making should be finished by the weekend, and some farmers are embarking on their second cut of silage this summer.
Teagasc nutritionist Siobhán Kavanagh said it had been an “exceptionally good” six weeks and it was perfect weather for hay. “We’ve had huge grass growth,” she said. The yields for silage cut in late May and early June were back on last year but the quality was very good and the second cuts of silage were looking good.
She said farmers had used up all their supplies in the recent fodder crisis so they had a lot of ground to make up. “Our key message to farmers is that they have to keep the pedal on. Just because the weather is good they can’t forget about the fact that they are going to be short. They have to keep putting out their fertiliser and driving on for the next six or eight weeks.”
The weather was also very good news for the handful of courgette growers who have begun picking ahead of schedule because of the good growth.
Denise Buckley Ward, who farms in Oldtown, Co Dublin, with her husband Laurence Ward, is one of the country’s largest courgette growers. She started picking her 22 acres of courgettes yesterday and will continue until early October.
“The courgette harvest is looking a lot better than this time last year.”