Wednesday, April 25, 2007


Our cows' milk production was measured during the Tuesday morning milking shift by our local DHIA technician. In addition to calculating how many pounds of milk each cow is producing, a sample is taken from each cow to determine the percentage of butterfat and protein in her milk. The tentative average for all cow in milk was 68 pounds of milk per day, and we'll know more in a few days after we get the "official" results.

The Corn's in the Ground

We finished planting the last of our silage corn crop late Tuesday morning. I noticed yesterday that the first we planted is starting to peg through the ground already, and I expect I'll see a lot more of it if we get the rainfall the weatherman is predicting.

There's nothing more to do to it over the next few weeks except watch it grow. When it gets to its gets to a certain height, we'll side dress it with N-sol (liquid 32% Nitrogen fertilizer) and spray another application of RoundUp to kill the weeds in it.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Thursday update

I took a little time yesterday to attend the "First Acre Ceremony" associated with the first soil survey being done in Lamar County in I believe 90 years. It was a nice little event with around 40-50 people representing several different groups, agencies, and ag/forestry sectors. As nice as it would have been to already have this survey done several years ago, we will have an advantage in that the project team will have newer technology at their disposal to go about completing the survey. Based on what I saw, it should be quite impressive once it is complete and available in late 2010.

We should finally finish planting our "hill" corn today. One of our employees is going to take over the planter from me this morning so I can run a disc across a few wet spots in one of our creek-bottom fields. If all goes as planned, we'll move the row-till to the bottom this afternoon and let it get a good head start on the planters so the ground will dry out a little more. We will move the planters down there tomorrow morning. If we don't have any breakdowns or problems of another kind, we should have all our corn in the ground by the end of Monday and I can go back and spray the Dual and Roundup over the cornfields on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Tuesday's morning report

We were able to start our field work yesterday, with my father laying off the rows in the "Rhudy" field. He should finish there first part of the morning and move on to the "Austin" place. I will start planting behind him this morning, and if all goes well, we should have around 18 acres planted by the end of the day.

Our cows' milk production has been a little inconsistent over the past few days, but they seemed to milk pretty good yesterday afternoon and this morning. The milk truck comes today, so we will soon know how they've really fared over the last two days.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Time to plant corn

We had intended on planting our corn a little earlier this year, but thanks to last week's freeze we're glad we didn't. It looks as if now we'll start laying off our rows today and planting tomorrow.

We will lay off our rows and apply our liquid nitrogen with a row-till. We will follow behind that with the planters and, depending on the rain forecast, we'll either apply our Roundup and Dual at that time or make a third pass a few days later. All in all we expect to plant around 100 acres of silage corn this year, which will take several days considering we have four-row equipment.

We will be planting a Pioneer variety (33V14) almost exclusively this year, save for a few rows of another Pioneer variety (31Y42) and two Cropland varieties (7505RR,8221RB) we will plant for an Alabama Cooperative Extension System research plot.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Here's to a full Friday

We generally seem to be really busy or really slow on Fridays, depending if we are rushing to finish something before the weekend or not. With several acres of hay on the ground and rain in tomorrow's forecast, today is going to be pretty full. I expect to be running our bale wrapper most of the day. It's a trailer type implement made by Vermeer that will pick up a green bale, set it on a turntable, wrap it in silage plastic, and dump it on it's end. I'll be pulling it with our Ford 6600, one of the older, smaller tractors we have that doesn't have a cab or canopy. So, I'll be hoping for sunshine and no wind, but expect to get just the opposite.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Here we go...

After nearly five years of maintaining a website for my farm, I've decided to give the world of blogging a try. I've intended to do something like this on the "news" portion of my website, but it just never worked out, so we'll see what happens.

Let me catch you up to speed on where we are. On the farm, we're milking 213 cows right now and are averaging about 65 pounds of milk per cow per day. We were doing better than that, but some sort of "bug" made its rounds through the herd and knocked their production off a little bit. We haven't planted the first kernel of corn, but will hopefully begin doing so next week. We have harvested some of our wheat and oat crop, putting up 136 ensiled bales so far. I should be able to add to that number by the end of the week.

It seems like there's as much to do off the farm as there is on the farm. I've spent time at my church the last two evenings, one for a meeting and one to finish some interior work on our Family Life Center. I've been working on my high school class's 10 year reunion and also have been working with a lot of Farmers Federation stuff.

Well, it's 7:40 AM and time to go back to work. I'll keep you up to date as things progress.