Robert Moore has set himself the goal of leaving his 356 ha arable unit in better condition than when he took it over in 1988.
He and his sister Janet grow wheat, barley and rapeseed, and run an agricultural plastic recycling plant at Barff Farm in Lincolnshire.
In the 1970s, all of the hedges and trees on the farm were pulled down to create a more cultivable area, which Moore is working to reverse.
He planted 5 ha of timber on the least productive arable land – given the land drains – and 3 km of hedges, with plans for more.
He planted his trees in waves for visual effect, but in the future he would put straight lines between them so that they could be irrigated in the early stages of their growth.
Mr. Moore also planted 81 ha of permanent grass and connected it to trees and the on-site reservoir to provide biodiversity-rich wildlife corridors.
He reintroduced sheep and cattle to the farm for the first time in 60 years. “I could take pasture for the cropland rotation, but it will be at least five years,” he said.
In 2013, he installed a 72 kW solar panel and added an additional 130 kW in 2020 to run the recycling plant, after planting reed beds in 2010 to capture the plant’s runoff.
“If carbon credits on trees can be traded, it would encourage farmers to grow them and discourage them from taking them out,” Moore said.
“But you have to recognize when things need to change; ecologically, economically and visually. The environment can’t wait for us to make a positive change – I have to get the job done now. “
Watch Robert Moore’s video explaining how he increased trees and biodiversity on his farm.
Message from our sponsors
Lloyds Bank and the Woodland Trust are happy to work with Farmers Weekly to help farming and farming businesses get the right trees in the right places.
Trees and hedges don’t have to shade your business – planting the right trees in the right places can provide environmental benefits and give you opportunities to diversify.
Learn more about woodlandtrust.org.uk/lloydsbank