The Seasons

Lots of things need to be done during the year to make sure a good crop is harvested.

Lets follow the farmers year by season:

The farmer has to prepare the field for the crop. This is done by ploughing the fields. When the farmer ploughs the field it turns over the top layers of the soil and brings fresh nutrients to the surface and at the same time buries the weeds and bits from the last crop. The lines that you see in a filed after ploughing are called furrows. Ploughing also helps to put air into the soil and helps it to hold water better. This is important to help the wheat grow healthy and strong.

The farmer sows the seed in the field. In the old days this was usually done by hand. In modern farming this is done with a seed drill. This method uses a machine to bury the seed in the ground at just the right depth to provide protection and to stimulate growth.

Spring is the time when the seed has started to grow (or germinate) and can be seen coming up from the soil. At this time of the year the farmer will add fertiliser to help the plant grow, and may also spray the plants with chemicals to prevent weeds or insects from damaging the crop.

The crop is now ready for harvesting. This is usually done around February in New Zealand.