Wheat, Straw and Baling
It’s been a circus around here, and I don’t mean lions and tigers and bears oh my! It’s been wheat, straw, baling oh my!
This is one of our busiest times of the whole summer on the farm. Our guys have been working 15 hours a day to combine 130 acres of wheat. After getting the wheat off, we had such a surprise to find we had more straw than we knew what to do with.
When I was growing up at home, farming was different than what I live today. My family had a small family farm in Marshall, about 30 minutes southeast of where we are now. We had a little bit of everything at different times — sheep, pigs, cows and crops. Now after being married for 15 years and living on a bigger operation, things are done a little differently. We use to always square bale the hay and straw on flatbed wagons. My dad and grandpa would get family members or high school kids looking for some extra summer money to stack the wagon and then stack it in the mow. Back then, everything was more labor intensive. Now, the bigger equipment cuts down on time and labor costs.
This past week, the guys spent their time combining all of the wheat and taking it to the elevator in dump trucks, many times waiting in long lines for a couple of hours. Then the straw had to be raked and turned over to make it easier to pick up to round bale.
This year we had so much straw that we have more than 550 round bales. There are usually a couple of wagon loads (not flatbeds) of square bales, over 320 so far. Each of these takes a different piece of equipment. We use a combine, dump trucks, tractors, a rake and two different kinds of balers.
That’s what’s been keeping us busy this summer! How about you?