We have had two weeks of beautiful hay making weather. I think we have covered every acre that was standing high enough to mow. We ran a bunch of square bales on Saturday. The air is moving, the temperature has been good and there have been half decent sunny days. We haven’t had any rain, though, in 14 days and the ground is dried out.
There are a few guys starting on corn and beans. Moisture on the corn has been 17% to probably 45%. So far, yields have been average around here, whatever that would be. Most people are just nosing the combines in to make sure everything is running right.
The guys who believe in the fly free date are getting ready to plant wheat. The guys that say fly free date isn’t important already have their wheat in the ground. The research I’ve seen out of Ohio State over the years says Oct. 10 is the best production date as far as wheat planting time goes around here. Getting it in early doesn’t really gain you anything. Sometime you need to be patient. I have seen some pretty good wheat that was planted pretty late too.
They are talking about below average temperatures and above average rainfall in the next couple of weeks. A lot of people think you can’t shell corn until after it frosts. But I’ve always thought the kernel controls this and if it’s dry enough to run, run it. I don’t care if it is frosted or not.
We have sold a lot of rye for cover crops on the silage ground they’ve taken off and the bean ground they’ve taken off.
We could use some rain. For the last 2 weeks I’m pretty sure we have not had any measurable rain and things are starting to dry up. It has been cool, though. There are a few guys who have started a little bit of harvesting. I have been hearing 12% to 14% moisture on the beans. Corn has been anywhere from 23% to 28% and everywhere in between on the early stuff planted in April.
We may try to shell some corn later this week depending on the rains. I hope it does rain some because I have 400 acres of wheat to plant and I’m hoping the moisture will help. We also have to be careful this time of year with the water table. If it gets low with as many head of cattle as we’ve got, we don’t want to have to start hauling water. The pastures are not too bad, but a little rain would really help them heading into fall. I have heard that north of Bloomingburg it has been pretty dry and the early corn has not been as good as what they were hoping for.
We are probably going to plant 400 to 500 acres of rye after corn. We’ll go in and spread 50 pounds of rye with the fertilizer spreader then take a vertical tillage tool and work it in to give us something to no-till beans into next spring.
We have a field that was in wheat and we hauled hog manure out there. We’ll work it down and sow rye into it so we can no-till corn into it this spring. We did broadcast some rye into some standing corn back in July and our plan is to maybe graze the cows on it this fall and take them off through the winter and maybe turn them back out on it in April before we plant.
We just wrapped up our first full week of harvest. We are recovering from a long weekend. We started last Saturday morning and it wasn’t going so well. We had to do some wrenching on Sunday. We got going again on Monday and had a good week.
We started with soybeans on the ground that is going to wheat. We got that done and switched over and did some of our earliest corn. We did a couple hundred acres and then we switched back to beans again. My brother-in-law just finished planting wheat in the middle of the night last night.
It is looking like we had spotty rains this summer. It has been the case of the haves or the have nots and if the field got some of those precious rains back in June and July when it was critical. We have seen soybeans range from 43 to 88 bushels for field averages, so it has been a really wide range. The shorter season beans were some of the lower yielding. Now the more full season beans are doing better. That maturity seemed to really make a difference along with the rains. The fuller season beans were still able to take advantage of some of those early August rains. Yields have been good on good fields and good on bad fields and the inverse too. I think it really comes back to those rain events.
Corn has been coming in right as I had expected. We have just done a couple of fields and both of them were within a couple bushels of their historical average. I think we have gotten all the bugs out of our system. Corn is continuing to dry down. The two fields we harvested were between 19% and 21%.
We are hoping to start harvest this week. Beans have been slow to mature with the cooler temperatures. We are waiting to see what the rain does this week and hopefully get going after it dries out after that. We are pretty dry right now. We have not seen any rain for a couple of weeks. We are hearing about anything from a couple of tenths to a half-inch of rain this week and below normal temperatures for a couple of weeks. There are some late beans that were planted the first part of June and may not be ready for a frost yet.
We have a fair number of beans that look like they are ready to go. We have some corn at the home farm that is down between 20% and 23% moisture, so if we get a lull in the beans we will definitely switch to corn. There are a few beans off around here, but most people are still waiting to really get started.
I think our week control in beans has been really good this year. In the corn we have had some weed escapes. We may switch up the chemistry for the corn program next year to get some of the waterhemp we have been seeing.
We saw a nice run in the markets as we are seeing some lower yields around the country. It has been nice to see some pluses on the market side.