Barley, the crop.


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Barley has a shorter growing season than wheat. It is much less frost hardy. It will produce better in poor environments than wheat so is often found in acid, drought-prone and thin soils and at higher altitude.

Barley is typically much less stiff than wheat so tends to go flat if over fertilised and so does not yield as much as wheat. It is generally very susceptible to mildew.


Barley is always awned. Barley harvest is notoriously itchy, mostly due to small broken pieces of the awns. Ripening barley has a characteristic smell that makes you want to start a combine up.