Tuesday, September 9, 2014

corn chopping...

Looking at the corn every day to figure out whether we can chop it or not.  The corn looks good, and I'm looking forward to being able to figure out what the yield is per acre.

I'll be using a two-row chopper borrowed from a farmer who no longer uses it, he bought a self-propelled harvestor and this one is surplus.  His comment?  "your tractor is only 125hp.  You'll have a hard time hurting it, and it'll do some good to have it spun and greased".

Thanks, Dennis!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Pumpkins

Im a little concerned about my pumpkin patch.  It's not a critical path item, like the corn or the alfalfa/grass, but I'd still like it to do well.  The biggest problem is that it's hard for me to get to the weeds in between the plants along the row.  So there's a bit of weed growth, and I think it's retarding my pumpkins.  But they're out there, and they're growing.  This is the first year I've grown commercial quantities of pumpkins, so if I were to do it again I'd do a few things differently, but I'm only out about $100 for the seeds and $300 for the tractor time

I planted howden pumpkins, acorn squash and sugar pumpkins.  the howdens like a lot of space and are agressive growers.  The acorn are a little less agressive, but still good, and the sugar pumpkins are the least feisty.

I saw an implement that made a very nice field, and it'd be perfect for plastic-mulched planting.  Surpress the weeds and warms the soil both...


 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Final cutting...?

 I've been pretty pleased by the alfalfa this year.  I'm wanting to let it get as mature as I can before I cut, but I'm having to watch the calendar, too.  I want to let it have at least 6 weeks of regrowth time before the last frost, and we're getting very close to that line.  So it's a bit of a guessing game, but I think I'll be able to get another  900 bales off of this field this year.   That's around 40 more tons of hay.  

I'm happier with the pure-alfalfa plots than I am with the grass-alfalfa mix.  The pure alfafa seems to have eliminated more weeds than the mix, but it does take a bit longer to dry when cut.

So far so good.   Every cutting I take further dilutes the cost of the inputs -- seed and tillage -- and I think next year I'll be able to get 3 cuttings instead of the two I've done this year.

I think I'm a go on having all of my forage needs provided by the property that I own.