Monday, June 28, 2021
The answer is a firm ‘maybe’. The wheat harvest is done as of Thursday evening. The double-crop soybeans (DCB) are planted. That is a cause to celebrate! But, of course, there is another factor to consider. Last week, there were BIG rains to the northeast of here, and all that water had to come down the West Fork of White River…and it did. The river rose over 10 feet in one day, and got to a tick over 20 feet (flood stage is at 15 feet!). Driving by the Grubb field during the flooding, you could see that the beans were completely submerged. But the water was only on the beans for a couple days, and the flood waters receded just about as fast as they came up.
As I drove by the Grubb field yesterday after church and on our way to lunch, I was surprised by what I saw. I was expecting the beans to be brown and dead. Not so! Yes you could detect a tan cast to the soybean plants, and you could see where the muddy waters had been on the beans. But they were definitely NOT dead. That may come with the high temperatures of this week, but as of right now, I’m not certain that any replant will be needed. It may require some expert consultant’s opinion to make the call. Is a flood-damaged soybean that was planted in early May better than a more healthy soybean planted in July? We will evaluate these over the next few days to figure that out. The 3 fields affected by the flooding amount to about 210 acres. I’m hoping I won’t have to take the planter back down there, but we will do what we must do. We will have more and better information for that decision in a few days.
We are celebrating and expressing thankfulness for our best-ever wheat crop. It was our goal to manage and invest in this crop to get to 100 bpa. It made it! 107-110 bpa. I’ve never seen wheat roll into a combine header like this. I’m reminded of the super-cold February days, when our Maker provided a white blanket of protection over the wheat crop. We were blessed with favorable weather. So grateful.
It took two big days of planting to complete the DCB. The DCB went into the ground quite well (mostly). There is one field east of Wheatland about which I have some concern. The straw on that field was extra heavy, and it was damp last Monday evening when we harvested the wheat. The straw in that field just did not chop well in the back of the combine, and it was difficult to get the soybean drill row units to slice through the residue. Other than that, I am quite hopeful about the DCB. With support from John to bring fuel and seed to keep me going, I was able to push extra hard and complete the DCB planting on Saturday evening.
Bill and Brandon are out delivering wheat to ADM in Mt. Vernon, IN. Instead of going to the elevator, this wheat is going directly to the mill there. They seem to be pleased with the quality of this year’s soft red winter wheat (SRW).
Another load of wheat is headed out for Mt. Vernon.
The farm work this past week was extraordinarily packed with activity. No wonder I was so tired on Saturday night!
This morning, I took the Gator out the spray some field edges to stop some johnsongrass. I also worked at the Waldo farm to spray under a power line tower to stop the weeds. We simply cannot get the big sprayer under that tower anymore, so hand-spraying is necessary. I am eager to get the rotary cutter hooked back up to the JD 6130R tractor. I enjoy making the roadsides look ‘cared for’. And after July 1, I’ll be able to mow the riparian strips along ditch banks. That’s a plus, too.
We are praying for some rain. Last week, the forecasts included days of heavy rain, with amounts of about 6″ here, and up to 8″ to the northeast, up the White River basin. That did not occur, but we are hoping for an inch or so! All in all, summer 2021 looks pretty good right now. I expect to see some corn tasseling by the 4th of July! My, how the calendar marches on. Days are getting shorter already, but it is hard to perceive that just yet. Dusk arrives about 945 pm each evening. The lightning bug light show hit a peak about June 20th and it is still quite sight to see!
These little green blinking lights fascinate me. I wish the camera did a better job capturing the show.
Have a wonderful week. Keep cool.