Sunday, March 24, 2013

Start of spring brings snow, lots of snow

While it may officially be spring we were greeted today with a heavy blanket of snow here in Central Illinois. Just doesn't seem right to have snow today when last year there was corn planted at this time. On the positive note, we at least go enough snow to add to our ground moister.

In the shop: We are still working on getting the sprayer plumbing finished up. It shouldn't take too much time to have that done, then go over the planter. We will be taking delivery of a small portion of our seed on Friday. As of now the weatherman is predicting it to be 54 degrees that day, so at least we wont be dealing with snow getting the seed unloaded.

In the office: We are looking at plans to concrete and finish off a shop in our machine shed this summer. Looking at our options and our long term goals when preparing for this. I'm really looking forward to this, as it is not much fun working on equipment on cold gravel. We are also looking at plans to build a office for the farm inside the shop, or possible putting up a separate building.

Here are is a picture of today's snow

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Getting ready for spring

It has been pretty busy around the farm for a while, sorry I haven't posted in a while. Last Friday we got to enjoy some warmer weather, which prompted us to get moving on getting stuff ready for spring. Its too bad that the warm weather only lasted a day, and now we have 10 days of cool weather in the forecast. Its funny to remember that there was corn planted at this time last year. Its hard to say when planters will start rolling in the area, but I'm sure it won't be till April. I would say that we are moving along on scheduled with getting the new sprayer set up, but we still have to go over the planter. I'm hoping we have the sprayer finished by next week, then we can go through the planter and we should be caught up well before we plant. Here are some pics of the sprayer project, we added the saddle tanks to the planter to add more capacity. Now we just need to plump it all up. I will have a total capacity of 800 gal, or 50 acres per fill. In the last couple weeks we have gotten some much needed rain. It comforting to know there is some moisture in the ground going in to this growing year. Thanks for reading

Friday, January 18, 2013

New Sprayer Arrived!

I was a pretty eventful week here at the farm. I ended up deciding to get a sprayer bought on Tuesday. I drove about a hour south to look at it, I was pretty happy with how it looked. I priced a few more on the drive home and as I pulled in to the shop drive way I called the guy and ended up getting it bought. I think it will work pretty well for our operation. I look forward to getting to try it out once it gets warmer. We ended up getting the sellers to deliver it for us, so the sprayer showed up Thursday afternoon. I will probably go through it and put all new tips on it, and probably some new hoses. All said and done, I'm really happy with this purchase. Here are some pics of it on the 4630 tractor as we unloaded it. Here is another picture. The sprayer is a Great Plains 3P300. It has a 60' spray boom, and a 300 gallon tank. This alone will let me spray roughly 30 acres a fill. I also have 2-250 tanks that I can put on the tractor making a combined capacity of 800 gallons. This would allow me to spray roughly 80 acres a fill. Thanks for reading. Peter Jarzen

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Farm plans for 2013

It seems the last 10 post I've made have started off by apologizing for not posting more often. Again I'm sorry, I'll try my best to keep this updated. As mentioned in the topic, I want to share some of the plans I have for the farm for 2013 in this post. I'm happy to share that we have expanded our acres for 2013 by 30%. With the help of a few friends, I am now working with a few more great landlords. I look forward to working with them, and I appreciate the opportunity they have brought us. I may have brought this up before in a previous post, but as of now we plan to buy a sprayer and do our own herbicide spraying this year. We have had good luck with our CO-OP spraying for us, but the return on investment on a sprayer is just too good to pass up. Being able to spray our fields right when they need it, and the savings of doing it ourselves make this decision an easy one. I have been looking for one for a while, and I plan to have one bought here before too long. I will post a picture on here when I get one bought. In The Shop Winter is defiantly been a slow time for us. We have been working on a few small projects this winter, but nothing too exciting. In late February or early March I will start going over the planter and getting them ready for planting in April. In The Field Since fall we have been working on cutting brush back along field edges. Its a never ending chore, but it needs to be done. In The Office I finished up getting out seed order ready for this year back in December. I had some last minute changes and I decided to dedicate some acres to soybeans. We grew 100% corn in 2012, but on a couple of our rougher fields we are going to plant beans. We will be roughly 80% and 20% soybeans this year. Thanks for reading! Peter Jarzen

Sunday, November 11, 2012

2012 is winding down

I'm happy to start this post off by saying we finished harvest! Friday November 2nd at around 9PM I picked the last 8 rows of corn. I have successfully completed my 3rd year of farming! As I look back on this year I realized how much I learned from this historical year. I have dealt with new challenges, people, business, and weather I have never had to deal with before. This will be a year to remember that's for sure. In the Shop: We purchased our first strip till bar last spring off a friend. The bar was originally used for applying liquid nitrogen. I prefer to use NH3 for our primary form of nitrogen. So we plan on taking off the liquid nitrogen equipment and redoing the bar to be a NH3 applicator. This should be a fairly simple project. Other then that we washing and putting away equipment for the year. In the Field: Although we plan on doing the majority of our corn next year in strip till, I am wanting to try some full tillage. I have had a later start to fall tillage, and it has been delayed even more by the rain today. Once it drys up enough to get back to plowing, we should be able to get caught up in about a week. After we get the NH3 bar done, I will begin to putting down the nitrogen for next years corn. Thanks for reading!

Monday, September 24, 2012

2012 Corn Harvest is well on its way!

Sorry I haven't been keeping up on here. Corn harvest has started a couple weeks ago. Since we has later planted corn, our harvest started a little later then most around here. We are probably just under 50% done, and are now waiting for later planted corn to dry down. Yields have been right in line with what we have expected for an average. We had some fields do better then we thought. I felt that we did an excellent job matching hybrids to soil types this year. Even with the drought we could see that the corn "liked" the soil it was on. It took a few more days and parts then I expected, but I got the new to us Caterpillar 8 row corn head on the the new to us John Deere 9600. Together they are a pretty sweet set up. The Cat does leave a few things to be desired, but all in all a nice setup. I was able to run 5mph and unload on the go, which allowed us to increase our harvested acres per day by over 100% over the 7700. I'm very happy with the combine, only one little break down so far, and that was operator error. I do wish it had a larger hopper, but I may just be used to the 7700 :) I will be sure to have some harvest pics on here before too long. Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Getting ready for fall!

As anticipated because of the drought, and early planting harvest is way early this ear. I took a ride with a friend as he was picking corn on 8/14. Yields were better then I expected, and moisture was 18%. I would say that I'm about 2-3 weeks away from starting. I'm just hoping it don't all get ready at one and start dropping moisture quick. It will be interesting to see how the corn does, some fields I think will surprise us.

In the Shop. I have been working on the combine. I'm about to put cylinder bars on the 9600 and do a few other things with it. The 7700 for the most part is ready to go. Been trying to get the shredder serviced and put a few parts on it. Grain truck is serviced and inspected ready to go. Once I get the combines finished I shouldn't have too much to do in the shop.

In the field. Once the shredder is put back together I will be doing some road ditches for the last time this year. I have a couple grass patches for a landlord that I will get cut, then off to mow 50 acres of CREP before harvest for dad. It will be nice to get stuff caught up so I can go straight in to harvest and not have to worry about doing other stuff.

Just looking forward to fall, hope it will be a quick stress free harvest. Looking forward to getting this drought year behind us, and ready for next year. Have a safe harvest!

Peter Jarzen