Monday, November 6, 2023
We were able to wrap up the fall harvest last Saturday afternoon, November 4. We finished at the Leser farm, our newest location. It is certainly a good feeling to have the crop all done… a relief of sorts. Now, our attention turns to the clean-up of the machinery and placing them into storage for the winter. There will be many loads of corn, soybeans, and wheat to deliver over the next few months.
Before moving the machines home, we took a couple minutes to visit and celebrate the end of harvest
As we look back at our crop year for 2023, we have abundant gratitude. Our corn and soybeans were the best average yield in the farm’s long history. The double-crop soybeans (DCB) were quite good, just not close to a record yield. We have much for which to be thankful, including that we made it through the hectic and busy fall season without injury, and not an overwhelming number of mechanical issues.
This final week of harvest was quite eventful. Last Wednesday evening, as we were cutting DCB at the Huey farm, I had a fire begin in the JD S780 combine. First symptom was that the Autotrac shut down, and then a few seconds later, many warnings flashed up on the screen. (24, of them in all, caused by the fire melting a wiring harness). The one I saw most was a warning that the tailings elevator was not up-to-speed. So, I stopped the combine, and got out to investigate. As I was walking around the back end of the machine, I began to smell and see smoke. John was nearby, and arrived at the machine. He asked me to dial up 9-1-1, and in a few minutes the Wheatland Volunteer FD arrived at the field. I am so very grateful for those volunteers; they worked tirelessly for 3+hours dousing the flames, embers, and other hot spots on the combine. The fire was eventually subdued. The incredible thing is that the damage is something that can be repaired. It won’t be a cheap repair, but it is inexpensive compared to losing the entire machine! Even with the damaged wiring, the combine was drive-able, and we set in on Thursday to secure the repairs at our local Alliance Tractor location. Our insurance also provided a rental to use while our 780 is out of service. We made those arrangements too, and the rental was at work on Friday. Having two machines operating allowed us to get finished with #harvest23 by Saturday afternoon. The fire-damaged machine will be “like new” when it returns to the farm.
John was a busy fellow assisting the firefighters
I must thank our wonderful neighbor-farmers who called to offer their help. It’s pretty touching, really. Another blessing, for sure.
Last Friday, my sister and BIL came all the way across southern Indiana for a day-trip visit here. I was so happy they could join me in the combine.
The conservation construction work at the Waldo farm is complete. There are 5 new WASCoBs, and several runs of new tile, as well as a beautiful new grass waterway.
Here, we plant rye on a new WASCoB, to protect it during this winter.
Clean-up continues today, and it is a pleasant 76ºF (24C). That makes for the washing to be a little more comfortable to accomplish. First, the guys will use compressed air to clean the combines and headers, and then a thorough wash will occur. They are also working on the grain cart and the JD 9520R that pulls it. The trucks got a wash last week while we were waiting for the DCB to dry down. Those won’t need as extensive a cleaning because they’ve already been detailed.
Again, we express our thankfulness for a wonderful crop year. Good yields, helpful harvest conditions, and no injuries are reasons for our lifted spirits. We thank the Good Lord most of all, for His blessing to provide all these good things. We also thank our employees– Bill, Larry, Bob, and Ryan– whose dedication and ‘extra-mile’ help smoothed the operation this fall. Our wives and families supported whatever was needed. And the businesses that support our work were noticeably helpful, too. Alliance Tractor, Hutson, Inc, Montgomery Welding, and the local Nutrien plant were the best at being responsive to our needs of the moment. Yes, it takes a ‘team effort’ to do what we do, and we acknowledge that we have been surrounded by the best.
I’m back in the office this afternoon, crunching the numbers for our tax year-end on 11/30. The pace will not be as demanding now, and supper at home can become a normal part of life again!
Happy and grateful farmers…. that’s us at Carnahan & Sons.