Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Planting Beans

We finished up planting dry beans last Friday. We worked the fields several times, using different implements to work up and smooth the soil and to kill the weeds. Since we don't use sprays on our fields, we must work the fields over and over again with time for weeds to sprout or regroup in between each working. Being organic uses a lot of diesel fuel, so don't necessarily believe those who tell you that organic is "greener". It is, and it isn't. There is no perfect situation or perfect way to farm. Go back and read the beginning of Genesis (the first book in the Bible) to see why wresting food from the earth has always and will always be a struggle.

Farmer Boy took his turn running the four row planter back and forth over the worked up field. Two of our children are working with us on the farm this summer, in addition to The Farmer, my father and mother, and The Farmer's father and mother. Many times last week we had 2 or 3 tractors working in different fields.

This is what you would have seen if you were Farmer Boy, looking forward...

...and looking back. The two larger bins in the front are designed to hold fertilizer. Since we don't use commercial fertilizers, these bins are mostly unused. It looks like one bin is being used as a place to put a bean seed bag in this photo. The four rounder bins in the back hold the seed. We use this planter to plant corn and all kinds of dry beans. It can be used to plant soybeans, too, which we have done in the past. The planter has different plates that are interchangeable depending on the seed size.

The seed in the planter hopper above is Jacob's Cattle Gold Beans, a new variety for us.

As the seeds are planted, a marking wheel (in the right of the photo) draws a line for the tractor driver to follow as he travels back across the field. This helps to ensure that planted rows are straight and evenly spaced.

Most of the beans have already sprouted. We're still praying for rain, as it's very dry here right now.

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