Monday, May 2, 2011

Spring harvest is nearly finished

Despite 10 days worth of mechanical and weather delays, our spring harvest is nearly finished. In fact, we just finished chopping forage for our silage pit a few minutes ago, and all that remains is 6-8 acres of oats that we will cut, bale, and wrap later this week.  Our rye and oat yields were about what we had expected, and we were impressed with how well the triticale did.  I'm not sure if we'll have enough silage to feed the cows until our summer crops are harvested and ready to feed, but it should be close.

Weather will play a key role in determining what our next move is. There are quite a few issues that need to be addressed ASAP:
  • plant silage corn in the bottomland
  • spray weeks in pastures
  • cut and bale the volunteer ryegrass in the bermudagrass hay fields
  • apply dairy slurry and fertilizer to hay fields & pastures
Regardless of what order we tackle these issues, we expect to be very busy with field work during the month of May. 

As for our milking herd, we are now down to 205 cows in milk with quite a few scheduled to "dry off" over the next few weeks. Their milk production has slipped a little, but they're still hanging in there. We're still grazing them every morning and will continue to do so for at least a couple more weeks.

Finally, I would like to thank everyone who has asked about my family and farm following the severe storms and tornadoes that devastated parts of the Southeast last week.  We made it through with no damage and only minor inconvenience, but I would ask you to keep the hundreds who weren't as fortunate in your thoughts and prayers. 

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