2017 Between the Rows


  • Glen Newcomer

    We were very fortunate this past week. We finally received a measurable amount of rain. We had good coverage over all of our farms and it is really going to make a difference. Prior to that the crop was reaching a critical stage of plant development when it was dry. Now with the rain, I believe the crop can get back on track. Rainfall amounts on our farms ranged from an inch to 1.4 inches so it was a good general rain last week. We missed several rains prior to that and it was getting bad.

    As far as plant stress we really didn’t see the corn rolling, but the plants were just shutting down and they virtually stopped growing. There was no vegetative growth taking place above the ground and the roots were just trying to sustain the plant to keep it alive.

    Clearly there was a benefit to replanting the affected corn acres when we did. We did not have a good stand established before that. Even though the corn is behind in growth, the uniformity of the stand should ultimately perform better than the thin stand we would have if we had not replanted.

    This last week we finished applying anhydrous. We ran some prescriptions of variable rate anhydrous. We used DuPont Encirca services for that decision.

    The management zones that were developed were a combination of past yield history and soil types along with soil tests prior to planting to establish nitrate levels in the soil. The prescriptions that were developed had a wide range of applications. We defined high and low rates of nitrogen for the prescriptions. We will track these fields through harvest to see if we have a favorable response to the treatment.

    We also applied FeXapan to our Roundup Ready2 Xtend soybeans last week. This is new technology for us on our farm.  We are excited about the possibilities this technology brings for additional options in controlling difficult broadleaf weeds. By following the label, we have no concerns at this time about spray drift or volatilization of the dicamba. We’ll be watching and monitoring this very closely in the coming weeks.

    I’m always interested in trying new technologies on our farm. It’s one way to stay one step ahead in the game of farming. Ultimately we’re looking for a competitive advantage from bottom line performance.

    Print Friendly

  • Brandon Monebrake

    We caught a big rain Friday and that is the only rain we got in a while. Here at home we got 2.8 inches and our farm at New Paris got five inches. That is a lot of rain, and the crops look amazing. We had some areas that had standing water, but it went down pretty quickly. That big of a rain that comes that quickly floods the creek and it goes out into our fields at New Paris. We had maybe eight acres under the water — and I mean under the water, it was two feet deep —and it is dry this morning. Usually if the water goes down that quickly it doesn’t hurt the crops. It usually gets flooded at least once a year up there.

    We finished sidedressing two weeks ago and the corn looks great. But there are some bad spots. Where we ran on the ends of the rows last fall it really shows this year. You can really tell where drove during harvest and where we had the seed tender at planting. It is hurting the corn the most. We didn’t have a real winter and there wasn’t enough freezing and thawing. It usually doesn’t show up that bad and this year there is a foot difference in corn height in the end rows where the grain cart ran.

    The wind has been sort of an issue the last few days. We don’t usually have disease, but we are keeping a close eye on some beans after beans and we are trying to get out and spray but we have been fighting the wind. We have about four or five good days of spraying left in the beans.

    We have weed issues right now. The horseweeds are terrible this year and I went through and sprayed 160 acres for Johnsongrass a couple of weeks ago. Now we are spraying the whole fields this round. The township doesn’t spray the side ditches up in New Paris so it can be a losing battle up there.

    We knew something was wrong with the pulling tractor, but it was our hometown pull this weekend with the Preble County Smokeout and I pulled there and we are done. The head gasket finally gave out completely. I had a pull yesterday and I couldn’t go. I’ll take me about six hours to fix it, or eight hours if someone helps me because I’ll be distracted.

    Print Friendly

  • Ben Klick

    Things are on the wet side. We got between 4.5 and five inches of rain last week. We got 2.5 from Sunday to Monday and from Thursday to Friday we got another two inches. We have a lot of moisture at the moment. We had a few nice showers and we also had some pretty good downpours. There is not much water laying anywhere. It has been taking it in pretty nicely and the crops are really appreciating that moisture with as hot as it has been. We have a couple hundred acres of corn to sidedress this week so hopefully we can get caught up with that and crack into the wheat harvest.

    There is nobody in our area cutting any wheat yet. There is rain in the forecast for later this week. Most of the wheat around here is being grown to bale the straw. There will be some guys start this week if we don’t get rain.

    We have some nice full big heads but the straw looks to be a little shorter. Wheat doesn’t like wet feet and we had a wet spring. We always end up getting good straw yield, though, which is the main reason for growing wheat in this area. I think the wheat could go about any time.

    The first corn we planted that went through that cold stretch has caught up pretty nicely. It is getting petty tall.

    We finished taking off the first cutting of hay about 10 days ago. We are trying to get some barns cleaned out by getting the wheat off so we can get manure on the fields. I am curious to see how this wheat does. For the way this spring has gone we are very pleased with how things look so far.

    Print Friendly

  • Scott Metzger

    We started cutting wheat around the 17th. We had a little freeze damage in the wheat in the areas where I expected it. There the yields were in the mid to low 80s but the rest of it has been in the upper 90s and low 100s.

    The test weight has been fine. Some of the worst areas of the wheat were a pound or two lighter but nothing drastic like I thought it would be. There just was not seed in the head. About three-fourths of the stem was still wet where there was frost damage. The wheat never matured right. The seed head was dry but the stems were tough.

    We still have about 75 acres to do and I’m hoping to start on it late this afternoon. We leave the straw and double-crop right behind it. I like having that residue out on the field and it lets us get the double-crop beans in faster too.

    We got four to 4.5 inches of rain Friday night into Saturday and I’m sure that will lead to lower test weights. The sooner we can get that cut the less likely we are to have quality issues. The first double-crop beans were planted a week ago and you can row those now. With that rain and heat, they popped up pretty quickly and are not looking bad. The beans are really taking off growing.

    The rain fell over a long period. It was a nice rain. As we got closer to that four-inch mark we started to see some water running off but the ground really took it in. The wet holes still have water standing in them but if the wheat was left in the tiled ground we could have probably run yesterday.

    We went almost three weeks without any measurable rain. On the gravel ground the corn was getting pretty stressed. The beans weren’t growing well but it is hard to believe how they jumped out of the ground.

    You can’t really tell the difference between the April and May planted corn anymore. We have a bit of giant ragweed along some field edges, but overall the fields are looking petty clean. We’ll start post- spraying beans this week and we’ll be using the new technology. Two-thirds of our beans are dicamba beans.

    Print Friendly

Glen Newcomer, June 26

We were very fortunate this past week. We finally received a measurable amount of rain. We had good coverage over all of our farms and it is really going to make a difference. Prior to that the crop was reaching a critical stage of plant development when it was dry. Now with the rain, I [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, June 26

We caught a big rain Friday and that is the only rain we got in a while. Here at home we got 2.8 inches and our farm at New Paris got five inches. That is a lot of rain, and the crops look amazing. We had some areas that had standing water, but it went [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, June 26

Things are on the wet side. We got between 4.5 and five inches of rain last week. We got 2.5 from Sunday to Monday and from Thursday to Friday we got another two inches. We have a lot of moisture at the moment. We had a few nice showers and we also had some pretty [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, June 26

We started cutting wheat around the 17th. We had a little freeze damage in the wheat in the areas where I expected it. There the yields were in the mid to low 80s but the rest of it has been in the upper 90s and low 100s. The test weight has been fine. Some of [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Glen Newcomer, June 12

To say that we were busy the last two weeks would be an understatement. There was an unprecedented amount of replanting that occurred here in northwest Ohio this past week. It is not just in Ohio, it’s throughout the Midwest. It is widespread throughout Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, and Iowa. Everything planted in mid-May was crusted [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, June 12

We’re dry. We need rain. Everything is planted and it is all up. We finished the last day of May. That was a little ahead of a lot of people around here who had a lot more to replant. We had about 17 acres of replant and some touching up here and there. That is [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, June 12

We finished up on June 3. We got 350 acres of beans planted that week and a couple hundred acres of corn.  We had a good stretch of weather and ground conditions got right so we put the hammer down. We really never left the tractor seats apart from doing the morning chores. We kept [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, June 12

We finished planting corn May 17 and beans on May 20. We had 40 acres of April corn to spot in. All of the April beans got replanted. We dropped everything from 125,000 on up to full rate on most of the fields. We had one soybean field we had to plant a third time. [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Glen Newcomer, May 22

A lot has changed in the last two weeks. This last week was tremendous. We had the opportunity to get in and plant every day. We are at 85% complete on both corn and soybeans. We were very fortunate that the heavy rains went south of us and we were able to put in six [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, May 22

We could be better. We had another overnight rain. We finally got dry enough to plant last week and we got several hundred acres of corn and beans in the ground. Then it rained Friday night, Saturday and last night. We got close to an inch of rain and we are back to a standstill [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, May 22

We got six inches of rain and then it dried up and the ground got as hard as concrete in some places. Then we got four-tenths one night and everything we thought we were going to replant started coming up. That rain saved a lot of corn. We ended up getting six to eight-tenths last [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, May 22

We started back in planting last Monday after two or three weeks. You could row the corn this morning already. We got done with everything for the first planting on Saturday and started replanting beans on Saturday. We had those big rains earlier and corn really struggled. That corn we planted the week of April [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Glenn Newcomer, May 8

We are fortunate. We did not get frost last evening. The wind blew through the night and the temperatures did not get as cold as they had predicted so we dodged a bullet. There is a chance again tonight but the chances are diminished. We did get rain, but the week before we were able [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, May 8

We are soggy, soggy, soggy — three soggies — and it’s cold. The little bit of sun has helped save what we’ve got planted. We had a little breeze and it was 34 degrees so we missed the frost last night, which is a good thing. I was concerned about the frost because we’ve had [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, May 8

Grandma was all worried about her flowers last night but when I got up it was 40 degrees. We didn’t get any frost but we got about six inches of rain in the last two weeks. The first rain was 2.6 inches. We got back in the fields and it started raining again and we [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, May 8

We got some frost, but nothing too terrible. It was 34 when I got out of bed this morning. None of the corn we have planted was out of the ground enough for frost to hurt it. All of the wheat we have is actually in head. I asked grandpa when he saw wheat heads [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Glen Newcomer, April 24

We are off to a very slow start here in Northwest Ohio. I can only think of a handful of operators who have put any corn in the ground. I can only think of one operator who has put any soybeans in the ground. We had a good run last week. We completed a lot [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, April 24

We have some pretty nice weather today here. I am getting a little ground work done, dad is getting the planter ready and we’re going to start planting corn today. A neighbor started planting yesterday on their sand and gravel ground. That is where we are starting today because it is a little dryer. Wednesday [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, April 24

We just started on corn yesterday. We’re loading the bean planter up now. We are slowly but surely drying out. We have been so wet and we still have some fields with wheat stubble that are too wet for the planter. We just planted one field of corn. It usually takes a good half-day to [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, April 24

We are cleaning out beans from grain bins today. We still have a lot of corn left in storage waiting for higher prices. We’re holding quite a bit to see what we can do. We got a bunch of rain Thursday night— 1.6 inches. We got the most rain around here right at the house. [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, April 10

All we’ve gotten so far in April was eight-tenths and fourth-tenths. We’re a little on the dry side compared to last year and drier than other parts of the state. We have not been out in the fields, but the neighbors started today putting ammonia on. We are going to get started spraying soon hopefully. [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, April 10

It is a beautiful day. It’s pretty windy and that is helping dry things out. All of our tile lines are running and I think we are at full capacity now with our water table. We had around two inches the end of last week and for the month of April already we’re between 3.5 [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, April 10

It is pretty nice here this morning. The sun is shining and there is a breeze. We actually got about three inches of snow on Friday and before that we had on and off rain. Grandpa says we always get a snow some time around Easter. That is generally pretty accurate. This was a wet, [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Glen Newcomer, April 10

There is no doubt that the weather we had last week had an impact on doing any field operations in northwest Ohio. With the rain we received, it will be at least 10 days before we will be in a position to do tillage or planting. We received about 2.5 inches of rain. It wasn’t [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Glen Newcomer, March 27

We have a diversified farm where we grow corn and soybeans and grow seed for a major seed company. We have worked in seed sales for over 30 years with local farmers and we also have a crop insurance agency where we serve farmers in several counties here in northwest Ohio. We have diverse soil [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Scott Metzger, March 27

We have about 3,000 acres with my uncle, two cousins and I. We grow corn, wheat and soybeans. We have some creek bottom ground that gets pretty gravelly and dry in the summer when it doesn’t rain. We also have some creek bottom fields that are some of our best ground. You can go across [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Ben Klick, March 27

I am a fifth generation farmer with Windy Way farms near Massilon. I work full time on the farm with my dad and grandfather. We are a grain and beef operation. It is a half rural half metropolitan area. We feed beef cattle and raise corn, soybeans, wheat, and hay. When I got out of [...]

Print Friendly
Read More

Brandon Monebrake, March 27

We’re farming about 2,300 acres counting custom ground. We raise about 40% corn and 60% beans we have more bean ground this year than we have because of prices and it is easier to get them in. We also raise a little freezer beef. We have been all no-till since 2000. If we work the [...]

Print Friendly
Read More