Chapter 2: Sheeping / Chapter 3: Shopping / Chapter 4: Wilding / Chapter 5: Pan(dem)icking / Chapter 6: Melting / Chapter 7: Fluffing / Chapter 8: Harvesting (Looking for my review? It’s here.)
Jeremy buys a massive, very flash Lamborghini R8 tractor. Everyone tells him it’s too big. It’s 10 tons with 40 forward and 40 reverse gears, and is too big for his tractor shed.
Land agent “Cheerful” Charlie Ireland helps him add up all the machinery, equipment, fertiliser etc that he needs. To cut costs they decide to go for second hand at farm sales. We find out there are 20 times more deaths among agriculture workers than all other sectors combined. At a sale, Jeremy meets a forester missing two fingers. Jeremy then spends £82,000 on equipment and £2 on a three piece suite for his office.
Charlie has prepared a cropping plan — what needs to go in the soil now, and where. Stressing that the initial work bears fruit later on, he tells Jeremy the saying “Well-sown is half-grown”.
Jeremy has his first run-in with government red tape: he’s not allowed to store his hay and his fertiliser together lest they combust. Two trucks carrying seed and fertiliser arrive. Jeremy calls on his National Farmers Union rep, Georgia Craig, to help him work out how to use his cultivator, and they start on his first field.
Jeremy realises he does need permanent farming help so he calls in Kaleb Cooper, the 21 year old farmer/tractor driver who has helped the previous tenant farmer work Diddly Squat Farm for the last three years. Kaleb is impressed with Jeremy’s tractor. They get started and make some headway, then the rains arrive. Behind with the field cultivating, they discover some of the seed has started sprouting in its bags. Charlie explains tramlines: uncultivated strips within a field for the sprayer to go up and down, its arms reaching all the crops on both sides. They need to be mathematically accurate, but Jeremy’s are not.
Oil seed rape put in by the previous farmer is doing well, apart from one field decimated by the flea beetle. Charlie tells Jeremy this will result in a £4k loss. Then it rains for six weeks…
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