Managing Crop Moisture
This spring was unusually wet and cold, and there was a lot of flooding. We had to make some tough decisions about whether to wait until conditions were right or whether to plant our seed in the mud. My AgVenture Yield Specialist, Wayne, reins me in sometimes when I want to be planting too early under the wrong conditions, and this year I’m glad he did.
This year, there were several factors that greatly influenced our harvest start date. We’re in a wind tunnel in our area, and over the last 3-4 years, we've had a much higher likelihood of corn going down, so our belief is ‘get it when it's standing.’
This year, we did a really good job spacing out our acres so harvest would be easier to manage. We went real heavy corn this year — out of 4800 acres, we had 4000 acres of corn, 800 of beans, so I really didn’t want all that corn to be ready for harvest at once. We did a good job, so we could get all the corn harvested in a timely manner and didn’t have everything drying out in the field.
I’m doing in-line ripping today. We got done with harvest a week ago this morning, and all in all it went very well. Personally, I was still slightly disappointed, but that’s just how I am. I was told to be very happy with what I have, because my corn was probably 30 bushels better than all my neighbors, and my beans were probably about eight. So overall, I’m pleased with the results.
We got harvest wrapped up on the 28th of October, which is very early for us. Usually we finish harvest around the 7th to 10th of November, but we didn’t have any rain delays this year. Normally we’re waiting on dry air and fighting rains, but this year it was impossible to harvest corn fast enough.
We got harvest underway last week, and we’re getting into our corn. We always try to start the day after Labor Day — come hell or high water — which we did this year. We still have a couple hundred acres to go, but our yields are all over the board. Some is really good, some not so good.
Around the Farm
We’ve just been doing work work, work, work lately. At this point, it’s just the late summer pickup, and we’re cleaning things up before fall starts. Of course we’re also taking care of the cows and getting the combine ready. We’re trying to sell about 40 head of cattle. Eat more beef, because we need the cattle market to go up.
Harvest began in mid-August in the Delta, and Jackson Webb is well into his crop. Here are some scenes from the fields.
We’ve been harvesting for two weeks now, and we’ve just finished all our dryland acres. It turned out okay; we saw 160 on some fields and around 130, 140 on others, which is okay. We’ve definitely done better, but we’ve also done a lot worse. I think it was more a compaction issue than anything. The field we harvested is our heaviest dirt; it’s a clay soil.