Tuesday, October 11, 2011


So much for keeping up with this blog. Now we are into harvest. I totally skipped writing about irrigation this year. Will try to do better next year.

We are rained out of harvest now, so I will try to get started on this again. This last weekend we received 2.75-3.25 inches of rain. It is very muddy everywhere now. We hope to get started again Wednesday, but today is foggy and cool, not what we needed. We will be loading trucks on the road for the next week or so, this is lots of fun for both the harvest crews and anyone who is traveling the country roads.

We did start harvest on high moisture corn last Monday, 10/3/11. This was delivered to a cattle feedlot to be ground and packed into a bunker silo for storage. High moisture corn is a great feed for cattle in a feedlot and it allows harvest to start sooner. They want corn with a moisture content of 25-30%, much wetter than dry corn which is stored at 13-15% moisture. The wet corn is ground and packed tight to get as much air out as possible. The pile is covered with plastic and will ferment (like beer) and will keep for the next year.

We have one day of wet corn to go before we can start on soybeans. The soybeans were also ready last week, but wet corn has a higher priority. It is tough to time the wet corn harvest since in normal weather corn can dry out 1-2% of moisture a day. So corn that is 30% today will be 25% in 3 days normally. This year it went from 26% to 22% in one day.

Yields of our wet corn is about what was expected. No record yields this year. We had some hail damage early,  ranging from 5-15% loss, and some greensnap, ranging from 10-50% broken. Greensnap is a nasty loss. It happens when we get a very strong wind at exactly the wrong time. Corn can be very brittle just before the tassel comes out if it has been growing rapidly, which it did this year. Then we got 70-90 mph winds one night. Snap. One hybrid had greensnap of 50%, others were 10-15%. It really hurts the yields, and there is not much you can do. While some hybrids are tougher than others, all could greensnap if they get wind at the wrong day.

We are exited to get into the soybeans. We have been hearing yields that are way above record yields from our neighbors. I hope ours are there as well.

Let the sun shine.