Harvest is past

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Late yesterday afternoon, we finished harvesting the soybeans at the Freddie farm.  They had dried down sufficiently from the previous week, and were ripe and ready.  The weather was cloudy, but windy and warm, and that allowed an earlier start to the harvest day.  So, another milestone has been reached at Carnahan & Sons.  Ross and I did our traditional harvest-is-done handshake.  It was a very favorable fall for harvest work, with very few weather delays.  I found it very easy to go to bed early last night!

This is the final pass of harvesting for 2016. It is on the east side of the Freddie farm.

This is the final pass of harvesting for 2016. It is on the east side of the Freddie farm.

After finishing at the Freddie farm, this was the start of the 12-mile trek back to the farm HQ.

After finishing at the Freddie farm, this was the start of the 12-mile trek back to the farm HQ.

Looking back, there were challenges to the harvest season.  It seems like we had some more truck troubles than typical, but with the help of our local Mack shop, we were able to work around the breakdowns and keep making harvest progress.  It helped that we had more soybean acres than corn.

Now, our attention turns toward the clean-up.  Today, we will begin the washing process.  The machines didn’t get quite as dirty this fall, due to the fact that there were not really any muddy days.  One of the first things to get cleaned is the grain cart and its tractor.  Combines will be next.  Finally, the trucks will get to see the wash pad.

One thing that helps the post-harvest clean-up is that we use a leaf blower routinely on the combines.  This takes off the loose dust, and keeps it from ‘caking’ on the machine.  By doing so, it reduces the danger of a combine fire, and reduces the amount of scraping that needs to occur.  There is one task that is rather yucky… and that is cleaning out the sump at the bottom of the grain tank unloading vertical auger.  We remove the two panels and poke out the sticky, smelly grain.

Smelly beans had to be poked and scraped out of this sump after harvest. But it is now clean are ready to store for winter.

Smelly beans had to be poked and scraped out of this sump after harvest. But it is now clean and ready to store for winter.

The corn heads are cleaned with compressed air, then the chains are oiled before the heads are placed in one of our buildings to protect them from the weather.

The corn heads are cleaned with compressed air, then the gathering chains are oiled before the heads are placed in one of our buildings to protect them from the weather.

The JD 9360R gets to the wash pad first. This tractor tows the grain cart during harvest. Brandon has started washing it. Soon, it will shine like new!

The JD 9360R gets to the wash pad first. This tractor tows the grain cart during harvest. Can you see Brandon up there?  Soon, it will shine like new!

Brandon washes the 9360R

Brandon washes the 9360R

John works to wash the Demco grain cart

John works to wash the Demco grain cart

It is quite important to us that we get our machines shiny again.  Dad always told us, “Take care of your equipment, and it’ll take care of you.”

One other task we are doing now is running the bush hog around the edges of selected fields to clean up the roadside appearance.

John works the bush hog around the field at Shake

John works the bush hog around the field at Shake

It looks better in the 'after' picture

It looks better in the ‘after’ picture

We are also working with Greg at CPS to evaluate the 2016 crop performance, soil test the appropriate fields, and work out a fertility plan for 2017.  Next, we will meet with our seed provider and map out our 2017 seed selections.

The pace can now let up a little bit, but there are still many tasks on our plate during October and November.

The yield results were not stellar this year…perhaps we have become a little spoiled by the past few years.  But we are grateful for our 2016 harvest, now in the record books.

 

 

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One Response to Harvest is past

  1. sheila says:

    Congratulatons on Harvest 16 completed! So thankful it was finished safely and timely. Now on to plant 17when you ” get your breath back”! Love to all!!

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