A lot has happened here since my last post from Boundary Farm. The Barley seed in my field is still dormant with the soil temperature stubbornly staying at 4 degrees. It’s now the end of April and I’m hoping that the first week of May will bring a warming of the soil so the seeds can germinate. The trees are in full leaf and hide much of my farm yard from passing planes…

…My field (51) is on the left of the screen and you can see the farmhouse (marked on the minimap in the corner) top right of centre. In the foreground to the left of the trees is the main barn. And you can just see the trailer and cultivator peaking through the trees on the right.

You may notice that field 42 has a green number on the map – I’ve been spending my hard earned cash and in the last few days of April I bought that field. Boundary Farm now straddles the parish boundary! I quickly sowed Canola (Rape) just before the window for planting that crop ended. Once again – I just hope the soil warms enough for the seed to germinate. It’s an anxious time šŸ˜¦

Doing all that work for other farmers is making me lots of money. But it’s also hard on the equipment. The wear and tear is showing on my New Holland with paint missing from many of the mechanical parts…

I decided to buy another tractor to spread the load – something a little less powerful but suited to transport jobs and other light work such as crop spraying. Talking of which, I also wanted a crop sprayer because fertilizing and weed killing will be next on the daily work agenda! I bought the sprayer first as weeds had just started to appear in my field and I needed to nip that situation in the bud! You can see it on the right in the barn – I’ll show a closer shot later.

I went to the dealership with a detailed shopping requirement for the tractor. It should be able to fit wheel weights and a front loader. Narrow tyres should be an option and the horsepower should be 80HP plus. Preferably it should be cheap too šŸ˜‰ I did think about the New Holland T4 – jokingly referred to as Baby Blue – but it didn’t take wheel weights. The T5 does but was too expensive. I would have liked to buy the Massey-Ferguson 390T but again, no wheel weights. Their 3000 series met all the criteria and I could have opted for the 3070 option which has a 95hp engine but I’m trying to use a lot of different equipment on this map and we drove the 3090 version of that tractor a lot on Oak Glen Farm. The Valtra A series was considered but discarded because, although it does have wheel weights, they are insufficiently heavy to prevent the tractor tipping when trying to lift a 2000l pallet load of Herbicide (I found that out while testing on West Newton Farm)! The Valtra N was ruled out as too expensive while the G didn’t have the weights or narrow tyres. So, in the end I chose to buy a Lamborghini…

…That’s the Nitro which has a 100hp engine and it fits all my requirements very well for a total price of Ā£75k. Now I can pose on Bond Street with the other cruisers šŸ˜‰ It’s quite amusing to see it next to the New Holland T6 because it has much larger wheels and they look almost the same size as a result.

The new tractor was put straight to work with transport jobs…

…There’s three 2000l pallets there – it didn’t even wobble lifting those šŸ™‚ Then we did some fertilizing on contract for other farms – with the narrow tyres on for those jobs where a crop had been planted…

…The sprayer is the Caruelle Nicolas Stilla 460, which holds 4600l of either fertilizer or herbicide. It is available as a mod through the modhub. Again, I wanted to try a different piece of equipment, having opted for the Hardi Mega 2200 every time in the past. A towed sprayer allows for greater capacity which is handy given that some of these fields are quite large. The working width of this one is 28m – an average width among sprayers as they cover between 15m and 36m depending on the boom length. This is what it looks like when folded for transport…

…It’s a lovely, hazy morning looking down the valley šŸ™‚

More from Boundary Farm in a future post and we’ll be looking at another Farm map too šŸ™‚

As March slowly migrates into April and we move into mid-spring, the trees come into leaf on Boundary Farm…

I’ve been working hard on other farms to make money and finance the cost of the equipment I will need on my own farm going forwards. In late March, the first sowing jobs appeared despite the soil temperature remaining lower than ideal. Initially there were potato’s to sow. Despite the huge payouts for doing them, I left those jobs alone as they will take a lot of time to complete. Then the first Wheat sowing job appeared along with one for Oats. To take these jobs I bought a seeder – I’m going to need one myself soon so it seemed an opportune time. I went with the Horsch Pronto 6AS again as it served me well on Oak Glen Farm but this time I’ve bought the associated SW3500 tank to go with it as the size of most of the fields around justify the much larger capacity……and the SW3500 will also work with the Maestro 8RC so I can add one of those seeders later when I’m ready to get into Corn and Sunflowers.

I had been doing a lot of cultivating using the Kuhn subsoiler but its fixed 4m width was making any trip along Duken Lane past the pub very difficult as the road is only barely wider than 4m there. It was also a liability when running on the main road – always having to weave around lamp posts when there was a gap in the oncoming traffic so as to avoid a collision. I’m not going to sell the Subsoiler – it has its place on my farm – but I needed a more transport-friendly piece of equipment for cultivating jobs. Although I went for the Horsch seeder that I know, one thing I’m trying to do on this farm is use different equipment, so I looked at the various cultivators in-game and on the mod-hub. I chose the Vaderstad Carrier 500 Disc Harrow. It folds up nicely for transport between fields and has a working width of 5m. It is also within the power of my current tractor which comes in handy when some of the local fields resemble a ski-jump…

I’ve done more ploughing jobs and some transporting – there’s definitely plenty of variety in the jobs. I often pick a job, hitch up the required equipment and then wind up doing another job requiring the same equipment after the first is completed! And I’m still finding new areas of the map to visit! Back on my own farm in early April, I completed the tidy up by removing some more low growing shrubs and trees to create a bit of open parking space for the equipment. I promised that this time I wouldn’t be doing any wholesale tree clearance and I’ve stuck to that – well almost. While using the Biobeltz stump grinder to remove one set of saplings, a full sized tree just upped and disappeared on me! Not my fault – that’s a map/game issue! Anyway, the good news is that, unlike the real world, you can just stick in a replacement tree – I used one of AlienJim’s season’s ready placeable trees. Here’s the cleared area with the Vaderstad and the MetalTech trailer parked up……and the big Beech behind them is the replacement tree šŸ™‚ I’ve also cleared the shrubs in the area next to the silo, which gives another dumping ground for equipment that doesn’t need sheltering from the weather……and finally, while I have left the Birch beside the barn, I’ve cleared out the low growth next to the field which was restricting movement in front of the lean-to. Then, I planted two full-size trees, another Birch and a Maple……so there’s been a net gain of two grown trees.Ā  And, wood salvaged from the clearance has earned me Ā£3k šŸ™‚

Yesterday, which I estimate to be the 7th of April in-game, I decided to sow my own field with Barley……The soil temperature is still stubbornly sitting on 4 degrees but I’m hoping it will warm over the next couple of days before a spell of rain moves in. Even with the increased capacity of the SW3500, the Horsch still needed refilling to completely sow this field, so I think I will have to add a Partner 1600 tank too (like the one I was using on Oak Glen)! However, the SW3500 did allow me to fertilize at the same time, so that’s the second stage of fertilizing completed. Next up I’m going to have to get a sprayer to deal with the pesky weeds and add in the third stage of fertilizing after the crop starts to grow. So we’ll look at that next time šŸ™‚

I set the scene with a story and I was going to continue the tale. I prepared lots of screenshots to illustrate it too. Then I made the decision to install a mod called Seasons…

I should have done this a while back but I was busy playing through my Oak Glen Farm series and enjoying myself. I should really have done it before starting on a new map. But I didn’t and hindsight is a wonderful thing! I tried Seasons out in a different save slot and the effect of seeing the farm in the early spring was mesmerising – to see the land laid bare at the end of winter’s chill. I think that sold me on the idea. But Seasons also drags the game into a much more realistic state, taking control of the growth cycle and much more to bring an experience for the player that is much closer to the trials of real world farming. At least that’s what it says on the tin šŸ™‚ I shall be finding out on Boundary Farm.

When you start a new map save with Seasons enabled you are presented with the bare landscape of early March. There are no crops in any of the fields with the exception of a few that have withered – everything else has been harvested. It’s a time to start preparing your fields for sowing. If you read my original description of the start point on the Six Ashes map and GBModding’s challenge you’ll know that there was equipment to be sold and a crop to harvest. With Seasons installed the equipment is still there but your crop is now a field of stubble. That changes the priorities – Starting out this time I won’t be needing a harvester immediately and there we hit the ‘Continuity error’ for my story as initially told in my last post. With money tight, I’m not about to spend on an item I don’t yet need when my priority will be getting the equipment I need to sow the next crop. So you can forget about the TX32 harvester – it didn’t happen šŸ˜‰

Lets take a look at the farmyard and buildings with Seasons installed……you can still see the junk and the old equipment in these shots and get a clear impression of the state of the yard at the start of the game. It’s fair to say it’s a mess!

As in my story post, I got the junk cleared and sold all the equipment with the exception of the Strautmann trailer and the Kuhn Subsoiler – the latter now having an immediate use! As before I bought the New Holland T6.155. Instead of buying a harvester and, as a direct result of the short period of gameplay experience I now have on this map, I prioritised clearing the area of the farmyard – removing the bushes and cutting back some of the trees. For that task I needed a Chainsaw and a Flail Mower. Here’s the Ino 270 Elite attached to the tractor ready to remove those bushes……and here we are at work – the yard is looking clearer already!..…Then it was time to hack at the trees with the Chainsaw before deploying a stump-grinder – the Biobeltz UM300……to remove any last vestiges of wood. I bought both items rather than hiring as I will probably need to do some more clearing in future.

Unlike Spinney Field in Oak Glen Farm, this wasn’t a mass hack down of the trees – just removal of the low growth that was getting in the way of moving equipment around the yard. I loaded the wood into the Strautmann……and took it to the Sawmill……Where I was pleasantly surprised by a Ā£2700 payout – that’s covered the cost of the stump-grinder! That trailer is filthy – so on the way back I bought a washer to keep the equipment clean.

Where does that leave my story? I think it will have to be untold (unless little bits creep in here and there). The Six Ashes map has only been out for 12 days. This is my first time playing FS19 with Seasons installed. Who knows what little bugs / problems I may experience? I think there may be too many variables to allow me to tell a convincing tale. So I’ll be more in the play-through mode as I continue on Boundary Farm – Sorry to those readers who like a story. Now I’d better get on with preparing my field šŸ™‚