Well, after quite a bit of time off from the blog, here we go again. Been a busy 2013 so far. All of our crops are in the ground for this year and have all emerged. We will be raising popcorn, white corn, yellow corn, alfalfa and prairie hay this year.
We welcomed a full time employee to our operation this year. Mason is a graduate of Hastings College and had worked for us part time while attending college and playing college football. He graduated in December and started work for us at the beginning of the year. We are happy to have him helping us.
I have spent a lot of time this year coaching a USSSA 8u Hastings Brickyard Bombers baseball team. Coaching 8 year old kid pitch baseball has been a great experience. To see where the kids are now compared to the beginning of the year and to see them start to have some success has been very gratifying. It has been a year of fundamentals and learning how to play the game the right way. The main thing we want out of our team is for them to look at us at the end of the year and say they can’t wait to play next year.
We broke from our color scheme on the farm this year and bought a John Deere tractor which has brought me much joy(sarcasm) in the form of all the ribbing I have taken from friends and neighbors.
Weather has created some interesting situations this year also. We have had a flipped pivot, some minor hail, gone from dry to wet and experienced relatively cool temperatures so far outside of one 100 degree day.
We have also decided after two years of subdivision living that it is time to be back on the farm and will start the construction of our new house in the next couple weeks. The mailbox is up, plans are done and we are off and running with it. I spend a lot of time talking about the disconnect from agriculture in our society and we felt like we were contributing to that with our children. There are many benefits of subdivision living like neighbors, kids for our kids to play with, socialization, etc, but we also enjoy the peace, family, responsibility, work ethic, freedom and privacy living on the farm provides us. So, back to the home place we go! Wishing you a safe and prosperous spring and summer season. The Weeks Family
Just a few pictures to get everyone updated on the happenings around our farm lately. We are just finishing side-dressing the nitrogen on the corn. We are currently cultivating and ridging the corn for gravity irrigation. We are also in the process of getting irrigation motors ready for irrigation season and hauling some of last years corn to our local elevator to sell.
Here is a few photos showing the progress of our crops this week. The one crop I did not include is the alfalfa which is ready for the first cutting to be put down.
The last picture is of our electrical controls at our bin site that were blown down in the wind a few nights ago. We were lucky as the storm weakened by the time it hit us. There were pivot irrigation systems and bins destroyed by the same storm to the north, south, and west of us.
Been a while since I actually wrote something, so I thought I would update everyone on what exactly we are doing now that our planting season is over. This week we have been cleaning up the planting equipment and getting seed corn ready for returning. This included breaking down the plastic boxes which carry our seed to be shipped back to our seed corn company.
It is also a time to get caught up on mowing, spraying, and general maintenance on the farmstead. We will be spending some time also hauling last years crop to market from our bins. Storing some of the crop has definitely paid off this year for our farm.
In the field at this time we are getting ready to side-dress fertilize the corn crop. We wait until after emergence of the crop to fertilize it as you gain efficiency from your fertilizer and can put on around 10% less than if you would put the fertilizer on prior to planting. We use GPS technology to precisely apply the amount needed to specific areas of the field based on soil samples that we pulled earlier this year.
We are also readying our row-crop cultivators to put up a “hill”. This is for our fields that we irrigate with gravity irrigati
In between all of this I have started tearing the deck off of our house that we moved into last December. The supports underneath were not constructed properly and we have had to tear the whole deck off and start over. Thank God for a tool called
a Sawzall. I will continue to post pictures of the crop throughout the growing season and try to summarize them every week. Hope everyone enjoys their summer vacations, our busy seasons are in full swing, although we did find the time to get away for a little Husker Baseball during one of the rain delays during planting as evidenced by My son and his friends in the picture!
Spring is always a time of re-newal and new beginnings on the farm as we plant crops and wait for them to grow and mature into harvest, but this year we have a new beginning in the addition of our third child.
It has been quite a year for us. New house before Christmas, finishing the basement in it, and now adding another piece to our family puzzle. Delaney was born Monday morning and came in at a just perfect 7 lbs 3 ounces. Big brother and big sister are both thrilled. It is nice to have them fighting over holding a baby, than the normal brother/sister fighting. It is almost like our 6 yr old grew up overnight when you see him settle down to sit and hold the baby. There are not many times in life you see him sitting and not moving unless he is sleeping. Our daughter of course is a minnie mom, hovering over the baby every second and talking to her just like the conversations she would have with mom’s tummy before Delaney was born.
We have received quite a little rain lately and it rained all day Monday which allowed me to focus on the moment of having our third child instead of worrying about getting the corn and soybeans in the ground. It is amazing how quickly our moisture has changed around here. In Early April we had been put back in a drought, and have now had over 6 inches of rain in the last couple weeks.
We put 500 acres of corn in the ground before the rain which is sitting in the ground waiting for the sunshine. So, on our farm this week will have the new beginning of a new baby and the new beginning of another crop year. May you all be blessed this season as we proceed through another crop year and another year of life!
“A conversation about ag”, not in person, but on the internet. Twitter, no less. I was skeptical at first when reading of #agchat, and at that time hashtags were the least of my worries as I was just trying to figure out how to tweet. I remember watching the first few conversations and thinking wow, this works, no facial expressions, no body language, just a forum to discuss the ins, outs, good, bad, new, old, trendy, tried, true, experimental, organic, conventional, genetically modified, local, large, small, diversified, specialized, organized, unorganized, independent ways of agriculture with consumers and other producers!!!
Here we are a year later and that first little tweet about having a conversation has turned into a one celebration of the AgChat Foundation, a continuing discussion held every Tuesday evening, offshoots of it all over twitter, and a group of people who have a passion for telling the story of ag and the belief that empowering others in ag to tell their story is one of their most important missions.
I was fortunate enough to attend the first conference in Chicago last August and came away more sure of myself than ever that our “Farm Story” needed to be told. I also came away knowing that I am an #agnerd, although, not as much as others!
I hope you all take a look at the #agchat website and gain an understanding of where it is going and what is happening. I have gotten to know many of the founders through twitter, facebook, etc. and have met them in person at the conference. Although we all have met only once in person, or maybe a few times at most, we have been united by a common cause which is to do the right thing for agriculture, and tell our stories. I have said it before and I will say it again. Who is telling your Farm Story?
Happy birthday #AgChat!
Here is the third item for National Ag Week. Enter your guess in the comments on our Blog and I will post the answer tomorrow sometime. For a bonus, see if you can name the attachment on the front of the machine and what crop or crops it is used for.
In celebration of National Ag Week I am asking you all to explain what piece of equipment is in the picture. Today is National Ag Day. The county where we live in Nebraska mirrors our state in that Animal agriculture is our largest industry. It is responsible for 1 out of every 3 jobs in our area.