New additions to Salley silage fleet

22 Jan , 2020  

The silage season is upon us and Kildare-based agricultural contractor John Salley & Sons have added some new pieces of high end machinery to its already impressive fleet.

Operating from Cadamstown, Broadford, Co. Kildare (Eircode W91XP7A ) which is just off the old main Dublin-Galway road, John Salley & Sons have been providing a top-class contracting service to its many customers in Kildare and the surrounding counties of Meath, Westmeath and Offaly for almost 40 years. The successful enterprise was founded by John Salley, whose recent passing following a serious illness has left a huge void in the local farming community.

A native of Kilcormac, Co. Offaly, John was one of Ireland’s best-known agricultural contractors and was renowned for his organisational and machinery skills, hard work and business acumen. Thousands of farmers, friends and customers from across the country came to Cadamstown to pay their respects to John who, along with his wife Anna, and their sons Syl, Patrick and Martin, created an exceptional farm contracting business. John is also survived by his other children Audrey, Charlotte, John Jnr and Michael.

John Salley & Sons have come a long way since its late founder started out at silage with two Ford 7000 tractors and a pair of Kidd double-chop harvesters in 1980 .The family’s passion for farm machinery, coupled with their ambition and determination to provide the best service there is, has seen them become one of the biggest and most successful agricultural contractors in the midlands.

Committed to going the extra mile for their customers, the contractor specialises in grass, maize and wholecrop harvesting, bulk fertiliser spreading, slurry and dung spreading, ploughing and reseeding, corn crimping as well as combine harvesting and beet harvesting.

The Salleys have a wide range of machinery to carry out your work quickly and efficiently, providing you with value-for-money and an alternative to investing in your own expensive equipment.

The success of John Salley & Sons is down to the knowledge, skill and expertise of their staff, as well as the quality of their equipment. This exceptional contractor delivers the value and quality farmers expect from their agricultural contracting partner.

“Our main business is grass, maize and wholecrop cutting,” eldest son Syl explains.

“We cut between 4,500 and 5,000 acres of grass, maize and wholecrop pit silage, round bale silage, hay and straw baling , cereal harvesting , dung and slurry spreading and fertiliser spreading. We run three JCB Fastracs for the fertiliser spreading operation, coupled with three 10 tonne stainless Bredal K85 spreaders.

“Business is good at the moment. The expansion of dairy herds has led to the need for more grass and maize silage.”

The Salleys run a stellar fleet of John Deere, JCB and Claas tractors. They have 10 John Deere tractors (four 7530 ,four 6920S and two 6620 ). Completing the tractor range are three JCB Fastrac high-speed tractors (3230, 3220 and 3170) and a Claas Arion 640.

Ahead of this year’s silage season, they invested in a new Claas Jaguar 970 self-propelled forage harvester which replaced a Claas Jaguar 890 self-propelled harvester and a JCB435S loader which replaced a JCB 434S.

The forage harvester was purchased from Leinster Farm Machinery in Duleek, Co. Meath, while the loading shovel was bought from ECI JCB in Rathcoole, Co. Dublin.  The Salleys also recently took delivery of a new JCB TM320S Teleporter loader from ECI JCB, for which they traded in a JCB TM310S

They’ve also invested in three new Red Rock 3,000-gallon slurry tankers and a new Krone 1400 Plus four-rotor rake, which came from Swaine Agri in Rhode, Co. Offaly as well as a new 20ft high capacity Dooley silage and grain trailer from Dooley Trailers in Ballycallan, Co.Kilkenny.

Other plant / equipment operated by John Salley & Sons include a Claas Lexion 460 combine harvester, a Krone Big M self-propelled triple mower, two 10ft Claas mowers, a twin row Armer Salmon beet harvester, two additional JCB loading loaders (416s and 414s), two Simon Cross slurry pump agitators, two Keenan Orbital dung spreaders, two Berthoud 24m Tenor sprayers, two Lemken disc harrows , two 3m Kuhn corn drills, a 3m Accord Maize drill, a 3m Zocon grass air seeder, three Kuhn 3m power harrows, three five-furrow reversible Kverneland ploughs, three 10 tonne stainless K85 Bredal fertiliser spreaders, a Bogballe 3 Ton fertiliser spreader, three Claas grass rakes (liner 2600 , liner 2900 & volto 800), a recently purchased new Krone 4 rotor 1400 plus rake, a Kuhn 4321 straw rake, two McHale 550 Round balers and a McHale Fusion baler, nine 20ft Dooley double axle silage trailers and three 24ft Dooley tri-axle silage trailers, a Korte 2000 crimper corn roller, a Komatsu PC130 track machine with Arbocut saw & flail hedge trimmers and a large selection of various sizes bale trailers, grain trailers , dump trailers. They also run low loader and livestock trailers, which are mostly Dooley. 

Servicing and maintenance are carried out in-house to keep breakdowns and downtime to a minimum. The Salleys have built up a large and loyal client-base and continue to attract new customers each year.

There is no such thing as a quiet time of the year for John Salley & Sons. The year begins with slurry spreading, following by ploughing and sowing crops. Things move up a gear from May onwards when the first cut of silage takes place. The silage takes precedence until the autumn when it’s time to bring in the corn and maize. During peak times, it’s not unusual for the Salley team to work around the clock in order to get the job done and keep their customers happy.

In addition to their agricultural contracting business, the Salleys also grow wheat, barley, grass, maize, fodder beet and feed beans.

“About a third of the land is in grass and another third is in maize. The remainder is in fodder beet, wheat, barley and feed beans which we use ourselves to finish cattle in the yard and also supply to local dairy & beef farmers. The corn and beans are supplied to J Grennan & Sons in Rath, Birr ,Co .Offaly .

Their impressive yard which John developed over the past 40 years is used to finish beef cattle in the winter months and also used as a depot by J Grennan & Sons for their bulk fertiliser operation to supply bulk fertiliser to farmers in the area .

The Salleys have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the Offaly-headquartered company, and continue to supply bulk fertiliser for them. Involved in agri trading since 1878, J Grennan & Sons has developed from very small, solely retail beginnings into one of the leading importers, manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers of farm inputs in Ireland.

Grennan’s core business is the manufacturing and distribution, at both wholesale and retail level, of animal feeds, farm fertilisers and agricultural seeds. The retailing and wholesaling of agrochemicals, farm hardware and farm plastics are also integral parts of their business.

For all your agriculture contracting needs, be sure to give John Salley & Sons a call.

John Salley & Sons



Co. Kildare.

Telephone: 046 9551024/9551427

mobile: Syl 0878148396 ,Pat 0878127247 ,Martin 0879267900

Email: [email protected]

Taken from Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 7 No 5, September/October 2019