Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Milk Mustache Contest

Grab a cold glass of milk, say "cheese!", and help us celebrate this year's June Dairy Month by sending us a photo of your best milk mustache! You can either post your photo on our farm's Facebook page or email it to "gilmerdairy [at] gmail [dot] com". 

Be sure you include your name, age, and hometown along with the photo. We will accept entries from May 8 - June 10. If we get several good submissions, we'll post finalists on our Facebook page and let the winner be determined by fan voting. 

"Dairy Farmboy" parody song

I came up with some dairy-themed lyrics set to the tune of "Rhinestone Cowboy" several months ago. I never did share them, though, because my singing of the song was awful (even by my low standards). However, I've now come to the realization that you actually have to have credibility before you can worry about losing it, so I broke out the old FlipCam this morning and put together something I hope won't make your ears bleed too badly. Try your best to enjoy the video below, but make sure you read my DirecTV-esque disclaimer first:

When you live on a dairy farm, you milk cows.
When you milk cows, you get up early every morning.
When you get up early every morning, you become sleep deprived.
When you become sleep deprived, your judgement suffers.
When your judgment suffers, you start thinking you can sing like Glen Campbell.
Don't start thinking you can sing like Glen Campbell.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Ryegrass harvest

It's been a busy two weeks, but we're nearly finished with our ryegrass harvest for this year. Our yields have been comparable to last year, and we should have enough harvested to make it our milking herd's primary forage from June until possibly as late as early October. Up to this point we have cut and chopped just over 75 acres with 12-15 more to go. Depending on the weather, we may pass on chopping a few of those acres in favor of rolling a few bales of dry ryegrass hay.

We will follow our ryegrass with a BMR forage sorghum variety just as we did last year, but we won't be planting that crop for at least a month. Next up on our "farming" agenda is planting our silage corn, which we tried to do two weeks ago but got rained out. That was probably a blessing considering we've had barely a sprinkle since then. If all goes perfectly (which, of course, it never does) we'll have our corn planted by the end of next week, spend the next vaccinating heifers and doing some pasture maintenance, followed by our first cutting of bermudagrass hay.

Here are a few photos from our ryegrass harvest, followed by my latest MooTube Minute video update:

We mow the ryegrass with a hay conditioner, which leaves the cut grass in a windrow.

Our silage chopper (forage harvester) is a bit of a hybrid. The chopper itself is a John Deere,
but the forage head is a Gehl model my father modified to attach to the Deere.

Once the forage wagon is full, it dumps over into the truck.
The truck then hauls the ryegrass to the silage pit/bunker where it is packed.