Yes, it was…

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Yes, we did finish off the corn harvest early yesterday afternoon.   We wrapped up the corn portion of #harvest23 at the Crook farm, and it was pretty good corn, 3rd best yielding farm location of ’23.  It was not quite dry enough to move directly into storage, so John had to run the production from the Crook farm through the dryer.  All that was completed by evening.

The last pass of corn harvest

Immediately after finishing the corn, Brandon took the red combine to the 2 Hills to cut some double-crop soybeans (DCB).  But he discovered that they were just not quite ready (dry enough) to move on through the DCB in earnest.  So, we are stopped from harvesting today, mostly because of the .3″ (8mm) rain this morning, and because the DCB are not ripe and ready.  Looks like it will be sometime next week until we can return to the harvest.  We will need 4-5 good days to get the DCB cut.

In the meantime, I’m in the office working financial information for the end of our tax year on 11/30.  There is much preparation that must be done in order to work with our accounting firm to plan the end of the year.  I’m working on projections for costs for seed, fertilizers, chemicals, and other inputs for the 2024 crops.  Inventories of stored grain, and contracted sales and values are factors.  We have a couple special projects in the works, one of conservation work on the Waldo farm, and the construction of a new machine storage building.  All these affect the numbers for FYE 11/30.

The guys are in the shop today, catching up some of the repairs we delayed until a ‘rainy day’:  A new A/C blower in the Peterbilt truck.  A seal kit in a hydraulic cylinder and a bearing on the grain cart.  An engine oil change and chassis lubrication on the JD 9520R tractor.  Replacing a broken CB antenna on the Pete.  The list is being shortened today!

A big bearing at the top of the auger is being replaced today.

Our wheat consultant, Landon Taylor, came by today for his first look at the emerging 2024 wheat crop.  He says he found the beginning stages of the first tiller.  His comments are very encouraging about the current condition of the wheat.

Landon’s examination of a very young wheat plant. He is optimistic at this stage.

For a few days, I have been experiencing some trouble with the “Combine Advisor” feature on the JD S780 combine.  That system uses internal cameras to examine the grain as it is being harvested and then it makes on-the-go changes to the 5 different threshing components to maintain the quality of the grain.  Yesterday, just before the corn was completed, the mechanics from Hutson, Inc. made the correct repair to make the system work again.   Yes, I could still harvest without Combine Advisor, but once you run a combine with this type of automation, you want that feature in operation!   It works well again, and I’ll be ready for the DCB when they are.

This screen tells me Combine Advisor is working properly

I think I can go out this afternoon with the JD 6145R tractor and R15 rotary cutter (bush hog) and trim around a few fields to make them look nicer for the winter.

We are celebrating the results of corn and soybean harvest.  Each crop came in with a new record yield for us, surpassing by a little bit the record numbers of 2021.  We are grateful to our Maker for the favorable weather conditions that made such numbers possible.   Good yields are very common around SWIN, and as a neighbor remarked to me this morning, “We are very blessed”.  Amen.

So, there will be a pause to #harvest23.  A frost would help, and we will need some sunny days to cut those DCB.

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