Friday, May 30, 2014

Planting Season is Here--Finally!

The fields have finally dried off enough to start working the soil. We have a hay field planted, have been working and reworking a field that had a cover crop of rye that just doesn't want to die, and we planted one field to corn. Here's our faithful Massey Ferguson 180 (circa 1970s) pulling the four row corn planter. Very few farmers use equipment this small anymore. But we are a small farm, and this is the right size equipment for the acreage we work with.


The Farmer lifts up the planter at the ends of the rows as he turns around.


At both ends of the field, we plant headlands. Headlands are a few rows that run perpendicular to the body of the main field. We want to plant the whole field, but when cultivating and harvesting, we need room to turn around. So we plant the headlands crossways, knowing we will lose a bit of that corn to being ridden over. In the fall, the corn on the headlands is harvested first, giving us room to turn the combine around at the ends of the field. You can see the headlands in the front of this photo. Next time you ride past a corn field, see if you can spot the headlands.


On today's agenda: more working of the field with the rye that doesn't want to die. We are hoping that the clutch on the little Massey tractor will hold through the rest of planting season. Stay tuned.

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