I believe I’ve pulled every tillage tool out of my toolbox. We are looking more at no-till and planting in whatever seedbed we have available. Tillage of any kind is almost impossible. Area farmers had about three days suitable to plant corn and soybeans in marginal seedbeds. I talked with a few farmers as I waited in line for a spreader load of potash last week at Frick Services in Wyatt. The future outlook is somewhat gloomy, gray, depressing and very frustrating.

If the tariffs were not enough to challenge the grower, then Mother Nature just continues to tease us minute to minute. One farmer said it’s scary to think what if we don’t get a crop planted to harvest? The soil conditions are cold, tacky and muddy. Sun, wind, and rain are very possible each and every day, many times all in the same day.

Field activities in the area included applying anhydrous, planting corn and soybeans, hauling manure and dislodging tractors and fertilizer floaters from the mud. It was too windy for spraying. We received an inch and three tenths this week. Robert Bachtel of Inwood said he’s third done with corn, no beans yet. Others reported 6% on corn and 10% on soybeans, but very little emergence. Old college friend Troy Thomas, previously of Crown Point, who moved to South Carolina, reported the corn crop there is almost ready to shoot an ear. Hay supplies are low, but it is impossible to make dry hay. As unfortunate as we have it, we must remember those west of the Mississippi River. Prayers go out to everyone that is still recovering from the floods.

Safety is something we stress every day on the farm and on the jobsite. Tuesday, my world stopped as I accidentally struck my black lab with the rear skid loader tire. She was out of my sight for a split second as she was chasing a mouse across the barn lot. After one yelp, I jumped out and hugged her tight as I thought it was just her foot. I ran for the pickup and headed to Seven Oaks Vet Clinic in Plymouth where Dr. Gschwind got some X-rays and it was determined the extent of injuries to her hind leg that amputation was best option. A week later, she is doing pretty good adjusting to life with only three legs. I’m confident she will pull through. She’s a tough farm dog.

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