Dylan Baer – Wood County
Most of our farm is in Wood County. We farm a little in Henry and Hancock counties. We grow wheat, corn, beans, and a bit of alfalfa. My dad is a seed dealer. We are delivering seed right now. I bale straw too.
On our farm we only plant enough wheat for what I’m going to bale. We have 220 acres of wheat this year. We had it planted in the first week of October and it looked good, not great, but good last fall. It is having a heck of a time greening up this spring. The green spots are starting to make the brown dead spots look bad. We like to topdress it in mid-April and the first chance we get we’ll get out there.
We actually finished up with harvest Oct. 25. We thought we’d have the month of November to finish up with tillage. Then it started raining. We hardly got anything done. We do not have very much ready to plant.
We bought enough rye cover crop to plant before all the corn acres. We planted rye for a cover crop but we didn’t get it all on. This is our second year of rye before the corn and we seeded it in September. It is about 3 inches tall and it is greening up fast. We want to get in there and kill it ahead of the corn because we don’t want it to get too big. It looks good. I can’t wait to get in there and plant it. There is no water laying on that cover crop ground anywhere.
We are going to no-till some beans and we have about 200 acres of corn ground after the wheat acres last year that are ready to plant. The rest of our corn acres still need a field cultivator or something like that. We have water laying in some places. We are still gearing up for things and we have time. We’ll see if the weather holds.
Nathan Brown – Highland County
I planted three acres of beans on March 24. We had ideal weather conditions. While I had the drill out to sow some cover crops, I thought I’d throw some soybeans in the ground to see what happens. The soil temperature was in the high 30s or low 40s and the ground conditions were about ideal.
They were planted into a cereal rye cover crop. If I can get the beans out of the ground, the rye may help regulate the ground temperature and keep them from getting frosted if we get a late frost. I went out on Saturday and dug some. They are actually starting to sprout. So far I’m happy with the progress. I have never planted anything that early before but there is a lot of talk about getting things out early. I have seen a few other guys trying it so I thought I’d see what happens.
We still have equipment to work through before planting. We are a few weeks out on getting started. We are busy with calving.
The pastures are starting to green up. We frost seeded some cereal rye in heavy traffic areas and that is starting to come up. The cows are finally starting to cut back a little on hay consumption.
Cover crops at this point are really just starting to take off, especially the stuff that was planted in late November or December. I was hoping to have a little more growth at this time, but you have to be flexible with management. We may end up using more herbicides this year.
It has been challenging around here. I drove from Hillsboro to Georgetown and saw a couple of fields of beans and corn still standing. Some guys will be chasing the combine with the corn planter this year.
Andrew Armstrong – Clark County
We farm corn and soybeans in the southeast corner of Clark County. As of right now we have planters still in the shop. Some are ready to roll when the weather is perfect. We are still thinking about trying to spray some burndown, but we are waiting on the weather.
We thought we had a window here this weekend and we got a little drizzle that just softened up the top and we didn’t want to risk anything. We don’t want to get in too much of a hurry but as the calendar continues to flip everyone is getting excited.
We parked the combines last fall. Then the faucet turned on and it never shut off.
We always aim to do some burndown around Thanksgiving, but we didn’t get a window of opportunity. We can get a lot accomplished in the matter of a couple of days, though. In 3 days we can be caught up with herbicide application.
We typically are no-till. We do have a field that was systematically tiled last year. We cultivate it, plant it and chisel plow it the following fall, but we didn’t get that done. We are going to plant it rough. We try to keep everything else no-till. We don’t want to mess up the no-till.
We have not done much with cover crops but if you look at some of our fields right now you may think we are into cover crops with all of the weeds that have come up. We are very interested in cover crops but we are concerned with the management. Are we going to efficiently be able to plant them and kill them? Will they pay for themselves in the future?
We keep watching the weather here. We are ready to go with a moment’s notice. It will probably be toward the end of April before we start planting.
Lamar Liming – Trumbull/ Mahoning County
We’re in Lordstown, Ohio, which is in southern Trumbull County. We have a dairy and grain farm. We milk about 60 cows and farm 700 acres. I am about 20 miles from the Pennsylvania line, just barely into the Snow Belt.
We are starting to dry out, but it seems like we get dry and it rains again. Last weekend we had 2.25 inches of rain that soaked everything down. It warmed up pretty nice, though, this weekend and the grass is trying to pop. We have been trying to haul manure. It has been a real challenge trying to get manure out.
Harvest was long. We finished up in December with our own crops. We did a little bit of custom work and it got into February before we finished that. There are still some crops out in the area. A week ago I still saw some beans out.
All of last year was a challenge. It was a challenge getting stuff in, making hay and planting wheat. I planted about half my wheat and it looks like I’m going to burn it all off. None if it is going to make it. I think I got it planted on Oct. 18. The insurance date is Oct. 20. It just didn’t want to come out of the ground. We had so much water and freezing and ice. It was a terrible winter for wheat around here.
They say dairy is going to be better in 2019. It is picking up a little bit here from what it was, but it has been very challenging. Ideally we get done planting by mid-May and then we start chopping hay. Last year we were planting corn, planting beans and chopping hay all at the beginning of June. It was hurry up and get it all done at the same time.