Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Time to get busy!

I guess the dairy farming life is always busy, but the past couple of weeks have seemed a little slow since we've not had any field work or extra herd work to attend to. That's about to change, though.

Yesterday evening we received about an inch of long prayed for, hoped for, and awaited for rain. With moisture in the ground and 275+ bags of seed in our shed, it's time to get busy planting our cool-season forages. I'll begin drilling rye (AFC 20-20) into prepared ground tomorrow morning, and will also plant a few acres of triticale (Trical 2700) before I finish sometime on Friday. Depending on the field conditions and the timing of the next rain chances, I may begin drilling our oats (Coker 227) over the weekend.

That will take care of all the forage we intend to harvest as silage next spring, but will still leave all of our grazing land yet to be planted. We'll no-till drill in a mixture of rye (Elbon) and ryegrass (Marshall) for our cows to rotationally strip-graze next spring. It's doubtful at this point that we would get any significant grazing out of it before then, so we probably won't plant that acreage for another week or two.

Of course, there's more work to do on our dairy farm than just planting forages for our cows. Our local veterinarian is coming next Tuesday morning to pregnancy check about 40 cows and 40 bred heifers. About a dozen of our pregnant milking cows are due to dry off early next week, and at least half that many dry cows should calve before the end of next week. We'll also be re-grouping our heifers (by size) and moving them to different pastures over the next couple of weeks.

I've also got a very busy off-the-farm schedule lined up. I was in Montgomery this past Monday for an ADA of Alabama board meeting (dairy check-off) and a dairy show at the Alabama National Fair. Next Wednesday I'll be traveling to the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis to serve as a judge at the Extemporaneous Public Speaking CDE Finals, as well as to promote Farm Bureau's Young Farmers & Ranchers Program with a few fellow YF&R Committee members.

Yep, it's gonna be a busy few weeks, but I wouldn't have it any other way!

No comments: