Before we know it, August will slip away and fall will make its appearance….
This summer’s weather has been the opposite of the wet spring we endured. For the first time in nearly three years, we had to turn on our pivot. Living in southeast Nebraska, most of our fields are dryland, meaning the only water the fields get is from Mother Nature. Typically, the amount of rain we get each year is enough to avoid irrigation on our fields. The only exception is the field closest to our farm place. We have one pivot that irrigates 90 of our acres. This field is special because it yields really well each year, irrigated or not.
The crop uses more water during certain times of the growing season. During the pollination stage, the corn is using the most water each day. In order to have higher yields, it’s important the crop has enough water to produce a healthy ear. This year when the corn started to tassel we were in a dry spell. Dad made the decision to turn on the pivot while the corn began to form the ear. It’s better to be safe than sorry and with the price of corn today, we’ll take all the help we can get!
Currently in the growing season, the corn’s kernels are filled with a milky liquid and will begin drying out in the next month or so. As the corn starts to dry, the cornstalk begins to turn brown and dry up. This is an indication the moisture level of the ear is getting close to harvest time. In order to store the corn over the winter months it has to have very little moisture so it doesn’t mold inside the bins.
Jared and I check the crops weekly to make sure there aren’t any diseases forming in the stalk or insects feasting on our behalf. This consumes most of Jared’s time this time of year. Each field is scouted for weeds, insects and disease that may be detrimental to the crop.
Each year, around this time, farmers are getting eager to get harvest preparations underway. Combines have made their way out of storage and into the shop to they are ready for the first day of harvest. As much as I have loved this summer, I am excited for some cooler weather and to get back in the seat of the combine.