Monday, June 23, 2008

Loose ends...

A loyal reader asked for an update on my farm and farms I have been traveling through, so...
  • We finished (or at least stopped) Friday night. I decided against spotting in corn wetholes - too much damage, too little gain.
  • We replanted about 130 acres of 800 of soybeans. Around here, no-till for beans was a difficult mission this year. The replanting was even more nerve-wracking: "Is this part thick enough? What about this part?"
  • When I was traveled to Ames last Thursday, the view from I-80 was deceptive. Things didn't look all that bad until you noticed:
    • It's June 19 - not May 19.
    • At first glance you might form the impression IA farmers only plant the tops of the hills. The sides and bottoms were bare.
  • When I flew into Des Moines this morning, I had a clear view. Immediately you are struck by the absence of green and the dominance of brown. Too much brown. The entire state appears late - very late.
  • Surprisingly, the attitude of farmers I spoke to Thursday evening was relatively calm. Some will continue corn planting today, they hope. I guess some were pretty late last year and got decent yields anyway. Still, this far north I was surprised they were still going with corn, although many already had atrazine down.
  • I'm currently going through the second adjustment stage emotionally. I recognize these now. Up until Friday, all I could focus on was "GET DONE". Now I've been out on the cultivator trying to open up the ground and seeing the corn crop up close and personal. The scope of the loss is now slightly clearer.
  • The corn stand is better than I thought. The condition is worse. Much will come out of it, I think, but my current figure for overall yield is 80% trendline corn; 75% beans.
  • I think the hay market will be chaotic. What little got baled around here is umm, crap. Rank, overgrown, nasty stuff. Livestock, and especially horse owners just added another challenge..
I will be in IA and SD this week. I'll try to post a bunch.

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