The 2019 Corn Challenge!

2019 – the year to forget!

There was no reason to expect the 2019 corn harvest to be easy but, in hindsight, it was the worst year of farming I have ever experienced! Planting corn a month later than usual is never a good thing but coupling it with the fact that the entire summer was cool and wet made the resulting crop yield and quality a costly challenge both monetarily and mentally. Corn yields themselves were okay but, when faced with the reality of dryer gas expenses due to wetter than usual corn along with an LP shortage driving prices higher yet and elevator charges and discounts for wet corn delivered to them, this year was one for the books.

To top it all off, our grain dryer caught on fire after drying about 30,000 bushels of corn! There’s nothing like a phone call at 5am from your farming partner alerting you to the fire! The Wabasso volunteer fire department arrived and, after a couple of hours, left with the satisfaction that the fire was out.

The next day meant cleaning up the mess and emptying the good corn that remained in the dryer and hauling it to town. A repair company was contacted as well as the insurance company. As repairs were being done, we continued to harvest and haul the wet corn to town. If it had not been so late in the year, we would have waited and dried our own corn but we had a long ways to go and the weather was already getting quite cold and the calendar was against us.

Of course, we couldn’t get through harvest without some snow. Corn cannot be harvest when too much snow is hanging on the stalks. The snow will plug up the sieves in the back end of the combine and not allow corn to flow through them to the grain tank. You can also end up with a mix of snow and corn in the tank, which is not fun to deal with either. So, there were days of waiting. The harvest did proceed and, once our dryer was repaired, we returned to hauling corn home instead of to town.

The final pass of 2019. Hallelujah!

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