Thursday, September 20, 2012

Chopping & Baling

Heavy rain earlier this week forced us to shut down our harvesting for a couple of days, but we're back in business on two fronts: sudex and bermudagrass.

We started harvesting the sudex (sorghum-sudangrass) on Monday morning, hitting the field just an hour before the rain started falling. Harvesting this tall, thin, and densely-planted crop requires it to be mowed with a hay conditioner before being run through the silage chopper (as we're doing) or hay baler. Timing wise, it's providing us with a transition crop between the June-planted forage sorghum we finished harvesting last week and the almost-ready-to-harvest sorghum we planted in July. We resumed chopping on Wednesday, and should finish with the sudex either Monday or Tuesday of next week before switching back to sorghum.

We're also in the hay fields this week. Early Friday afternoon of last week we started noticing an unusually high number of crows flying around. Upon further investigation, our worst fears were confirmed: army worms! We decided we wouldn't be able to spray quickly enough to avoid major damage, so my father and I cut four hay fields Friday night and Saturday morning. As expected, Monday's rain came before the hay could dry enough to bale, but we "fluffed" it to dry it out yesterday. Lots of sunshine and low humidity did the trick, and we're raking and baling half this evening and the other half tomorrow afternoon. 

If you'd like a couple of more details click "play" on our latest GDF MooTube Minute below. And just one quick little note about our cows, we're currently milking 163 after the latest round of calvings/dry-offs/culls. I'm gonna go roll up some hay bales now...y'all have a "dairy" good evening!

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