Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Three corn fields and combine notes

The corn was scheduled to be ripe on sept 1st, and based on these samples it's pretty close.  The sample to the left is the top field, and it's the least developed.  the middle field is in the middle, and the lower field is pretty ripe.

Looking at the ears of corn I can see that I've got my nutrition and population about where I want them.  the ears themselves are pretty uniform in size.  I'm going to guess that it'll be a month or so before I harvest them unless we get some hot weather between now and then, and I'll probably lose some to the geese that will be flying by, but with a half-million ears of corn, a couple of thousand lost won't be noticed.

I've chosen a four row corn head for my combine to match my four-row corn planter.  If I had more acres a 6 or 8 row would make the harvest faster, but I'm only combining forty acres, and I had to think about moving the combine around.  With a 4 row I can drive it down the road with the corn head attached; it's 12' wide, about the same as the combine.  with a wider rig I have to transport the head and the combine seperately, and I also have trouble getting around between fields -- I typically need a 16' gate to move through and a lot of fences around here think that a 12' gate is plenty big.

The other reason for a corn head that matches my planting equipment is that the spacing for the rows will be the same; each group of 4 rows will be perfect spacing; if I were to pick a 6 row, the area between groups of four where operator error can make for narrow rows could cause me to lose some corn.  this way everything is the same size, and hopefully it makes the harvest more efficient.

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