raked hay but it won't bale until at least tonight - assuming
that it gets hot and dry this afternoon and the hay cures out.
The guys swathed some other alfalfa this afternoon but the swather
now has a flat tire that can't be fixed until at least tomorrow
Dean did pick up some round bales - baled before all the rains
started a week ago. The bed of his pickup is flat (no sides) and
has "arms" that come out, grab the big round bale on
both sides, and lift it up onto the pickup bed. Then, he drives
to the edge of the field or wherever he is making a line of the
bales and the arms put the bale back down on the ground. When
the ground is dry, he can move 2 bales at a time but today, he
had to leave some bales behind because the field was too soggy.
In fact, there was water standing in the field in some places.
Dry, the bales probably weighed around 1500 - 1800 pounds each.
After having been rained on, they'll weigh a little more until
they dry out completely. Dean didn't want to destroy the alfalfa
growing in the field by making muddy tracks all through it so
he only moved the bales he could get to without too much danger
of getting stuck.
a morning! All the tire company trucks & people were tied
up so Dean & John took the swather tire off by themselves,
took it town, and then brought the new tire out to the field and
put it back on. $470 for that one tire!
before lunch, we took a load of seed wheat to Beaver. The elevator
there cleans the seed wheat. Using a series of screens inside
the seed cleaner, the best seed shakes down to the bottom while
the weed seeds, odd-sized wheat, and anything else that isn't
good wheat seed stays in the screens. If everything is working
right, it takes about 1 1/2 - 2 hours to clean a truckload of
seed wheat and load it back onto the truck. What's left in the
screens is called "fines". We sell them to the elevator
and they sell them for feed or whatever.
The railroad that runs through Beaver has been abandoned. They're
picking up the railroad ties between Susank and Beaver and stacking
them all at Beaver. The good ones are stacked together and banded
and trucked out to be sold. For now, the other railroad ties are
just in a big long, tall stack.
pipeline project is about done on our fields. Today, a big tracked
tractor (uses bulldozer-type tracks rather than wheels) pulled
a "ripper" through where the cross-country "road"
had been. All that traffic compacted the soil, just like when
you constantly cut the corner of a yard. Eventually, nothing will
grow there. The same thing happens in the fields. The ripper reaches
deep into the soil and rips it up - breaks up all the hard-packed
pieces and chops or cuts it up so that plant roots can grow down
deep and the rainwater can flow down through the ground, rather
than washing off the top.
The terraces have been rebuilt so most of the work that is left
is re-seeding (re-planting) the alfalfa field and waterways that
were torn up. The Milo that was mowed down and torn up will just
be a loss but we should be able to work the wheat fields and get
them in shape to plant wheat where the pipeline work was done.
With a project like this, you can usually tell where the fields
were torn out for several years. Crop yields are reduced and rocks
work up to the surface.
The guys did get back to fertilizing today. It's just a little
"sticky". They have to watch the low spots so that the
blades on the undercutter don't get gummed up or mud doesn't block
the outlets for the fertilizer.
morning, Dean fertilized the field where we had the wheat field
fire July 4th. Where the fire had been, nothing was growing. The
fire was so hot it popped all the wheat and weed seeds so nothing
was left to sprout. Even today, you could tell exactly where the
fire had been.
a day! Dean and I spent the morning at meetings of the Kansas
Association of Wheat Growers and the KAWG education committee
- the Kansas Wheathearts. He's been farming day and night and,
wouldn't you know it, the equipment broke down half an hour after
he left. The guys didn't get the disc all fixed and ready to go
again until 4:00 this afternoon. It took at least 4 parts runs
to Otis and Milberger. Needless to say, Dean farmed as late as
he could tonight and will be back at it early in the morning.
I missed the first part of the Middle School's volleyball scrimmage
against the parents because a technician came out to replace our
new computer's motherboard. Wayne had a friend come over to play
after school - just lots and lots of coming and going today!
Day Weekend in Hoisington! This is Hoisington's 101st Labor Day
Celebration - a whole weekend of activities. Wayne took 2 turtles
to the turtle races this morning. One was the fifth fastest turtle
overall - out of 60-70 turtles. Of course, it was the one Wayne
gave to his friend to race. His own turtle didn't make it into
the finals. We brought both turtles back to the pond and let them
loose. The faster turtle didn't want anything to do with the pond
and disappeared quickly into the weeds. Wayne's turtle finally
dipped under the water and then came back out to the edge, as
if it was waiting for Wayne to pick it up and carry it around
some more. It was a different kind of turtle than our regular
box turtles. It had a bright orange neck and legs.
This afternoon, it was really hot at the kid's races out in the
middle of the Hoisington's walking trail on the west edge of town.
Wayne won some carnival tickets in the 3-legged race, gunnysack
race, and running races. We were all ready to come home, as it
was just too hot! Dean met us for lunch but farmed the rest of
the day and evening. He's trying to catch up and knows that he'll
be tied up with different activities the rest of the weekend.
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