Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Wednesday, October 28th...

Harvest 2015 ended for us a week ago as we wrapped up the last of our corn in Greenfield. As I have mentioned in previous posts, this harvest was much different from last year's. This year it lasted seven weeks and virtually only had one day we had to stop for rain. Versus last year that was 71 days from start to finish with about a third of those being rain outs. Corn yields this year were down 15-20% and soybean yields up 8-10%. We continue to remain very dry, although the last two days have consisted of light rain. Since finishing harvest we have been busy seeding cover crops on a few select fields, cleaning harvest machinery, trimming trees, and other various odd jobs in preparation for winter. We have also been getting the anhydrous ammonia applicators ready to go for when the soils cool down. Catching up on office work, fertilizer plans, and preparing our 2016 cropping plans have also been on the list of activities. It's great to be done ahead of the time change this year!

Harvesting the last field of soybeans in Nortonville.

Planting cover crops outside Ashland.

Tire threw a rock into the back windshield of one of our semis. End result was a shattered window that fell out during pit stop for fuel. Sean Mears, one of our employees making light of the situation.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Sunday, October 11th...

What a difference a year makes! Last year we battled mud and cold temperatures most all of harvest. This year it is dry and warm. We are actually very dry. So dry that most all of us will need subsequent rains before we begin anhydrous ammonia applications. Harvest is moving along nicely. We have 200 acres of corn to harvest around Pleasant Plains and then we will move to our Greenfield farm. We have one last field of soybeans to harvest, but believe it or not they aren't quite ready yet due to them being a 4.2 maturity and planted on June 10th. Corn yields have stayed towards the higher end of the "good" category; despite only being 13-15% moisture coming right out of the field. In fact, we only ran our corn dryer for two weeks of our entire harvest. That is very rare. Soybean yields have been nothing short of exciting with only a few fields disappointing; but only by this year's standards. Bean yields across Central Illinois seem to be exceptional everywhere. We are caught up on our tillage operations. The weather this fall has allowed for good tillage conditions and also plenty of time to get fields limed to get the pH's corrected. We are working on plans to plant some rye cover crop ahead of corn on a few fields and hopefully next time I update the blog I'll have pictures of us seeding that. With any luck we will be done with harvest within the next 10 days. 

Another semi load of corn getting ready to leave the Elkhart farm at dusk.

Ronnie Brown running the chisel plow.

Two 40' draper heads can cover a lot of soybean acres in a hurry...

Harvesting soybeans on the Quad J field South of Prentice along Rt. 123.

Ron getting all the waterways and creek banks looking good on the Williamsville farm.

Keeping the trucks moving.

Harvesting corn on the Grand Prairie Farm.

Aerial shot with the drone of the chisel plow working at Elkhart. He is literally pulling in the field the same day the combine finishes.