We spent part of a day last week hand weeding soybeans. It was quite the experience when we found beans up to our armpits. These are much harder to walk through but we managed. Eventually we were rained out with a, much welcomed, 2.5″+ rain over a couple of days. This will go a long ways in filling the pods and ears on this year’s crop. We are still finding soybean aphids in the field that we sprayed a few weeks ago. So farm the levels do not warrant a second round of insecticide.
Helicopter giving workers parts.
As we walked the field we also were entertained by the power company workers adding stabilizer bars to the new power lines on the north edge our our field. Workers dangled from the three levels of lines and attached equipment that was fed to them by helicopter. Suddenly we saw the helicopter pluck each worker off the line and fly away with them dangling on the long line. We didn’t know what brought on this sudden whisking away of the workers until the rain started to fall on us. They were keeping a better eye on the weather that I was, I guess.
We spent parts of two days wandering Farmfest in search of the latest and greatest. The Gilfillan location is a convenient 15 minute drive for us so splitting our time across multiple days is quite easy. One of the highlights every year is working in the MN Soybean Growers tent talking to fellow members and educating potential new members about the benefits of being an MSGA member.
Some time was spent, as well, looking at strip-till equipment. Our interest was peaked at a field day this summer in Lamberton. Much needs to be learned yet and equipment is a key piece of the puzzle. What better place to look than Farmfest.
After spending a couple years looking for a replacement grain bin temperature monitoring system we finally pulled the trigger at Farmfest with the purchase of an IntelliFarms sensor system. We look forward to may years of accurate monitoring of our grain to keep in in top condition.
One final product we’re doing a test run on is from Farmers Business Network. We expect this service will help us with the arduous process of choosing corn and soybean varieties for the coming year. They’re an up and coming company that is farmer focused. No seed or chemical company is in their back pocket. All information is for the farmer’s benefit only.
I’m always amazed at how short the window is for building ridges in our corn. We had an area between two groves that grows fast because of the heat trapped there. We decided we better get that ridged before it was too tall. As long as we were at it we tried the shorter corn in the field and were pleased with how well the soil flowed through the cultivator. This is the most mellow soil we’ve cultivated in many years. We pushed hard and got through 75% of our corn acres and then got rained out on a Friday evening. It was Wednesday the next week before we got back in the corn. The corn had grown from 12-18″ to nearly 3′ tall in this amount of time. The soil was still on the wet side but the corn was visibly taller each day, so time was not on our side. We did get finished with the ridges as the rain held off. One more rain and some fields or areas of fields would have been too tall.