Corn and Bean Harvest

Chopping corn silage was just the start of fall harvest.

We continued on to soybeans:

john deere combining soybeans
john deere combining beans

unloading beans into semi
john deere 9500 unloading in semi

Yield Monitor in the combine:

ag leader yield monitorAfter combining the soybeans, we bale the stubble.  We use it to mix into heifer feed as a rumen filler, and we also use it as bedding:
baling bean stubble

We are trying something new, no-till drilling Winter Triticale as a cover crop into soybean stubble.  In the spring it will be chopped for heifer feed:

white 2-155 drilling small grains

We no-tilled winter wheat into alfalfa stubble earlier.  This is what it looked like after it germinated:

winter wheat in hay stubbleBoth of these are a bit of an experiment, after the last two years of heavy erosion we need to find different ways to do some things.  Hopefully these work!

After Soybeans, it is on to grain corn:

combining corn wisconsin john deereMost of our corn we grind as high moisture corn:

white 6215 grinding cornI didn’t get many pictures of combining corn….sorry!

After combining corn, we also bale some of that stubble up for feed and bedding as well, here I am raking it into windrows to be baled:
raking corn stalks
We also are working on our new dry cow/maternity barn:

concrete pump

 

Of course, all through harvest we still have cattle to deal with, here Theo, our Dad, and myself sort some young stock:

sorting young stock
Young stock in the fog:
young stock in fog
Harvest is pretty much wrapped up.  We have just a couple of acres of replanted corn left to do, we will get that soon.  We are still working on our dry cow barn, as the weather caught the concrete crew out a little bit.  They should finish pouring this week.

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Chopping Corn

We spent most of last week chopping corn.  We actually would have finished chopping on Thursday, but the rain came about 2 hours early!  We finished today.  Roughly half of all of the forage that we feed for a year is harvested in about 4 days.  Becky took most of these pictures.

Here Delbert is opening up some fields for our neighbors:

claas 900 chopping into meyers chopper boxOpening up fields for the crop insurance adjuster:
opening up corn silage fields
Waiting my turn to be filled:

claas 900 chopping corn into truckShots by Becky:
harvesting maize
chopping cornclaas 492 chopping corn into truck
claas 900 coming out of cornclaas 492 series chopping into truckchopping corn truck switch
claas 900 switching trucksclaas 900 chopping corn freightliner
chopping maizeharvest 14 truck load dairy barnThe pile, we put three tractors on the pile this year.  We had a problem not getting the silage packed tight enough last year, so we hired another tractor.  Then our blade tractor broke down, so we had to hire a 2nd tractor with a blade:
building drive over pile john deere

dumping corn silage on pile

building drive over pile john deere whiteTwo tractors pushed the silage up, and then helped pack between each load.  The third tractor simply drives back and forth to pack the silage.  A bit boring, but necessary!
silage drive over pileView from the packing tractor….look out, silage coming up!

john deere pushing silageChopping into the dark:

packing silage after darkWith rain coming we started covering the pile while they were still chopping.  We finished in the pouring rain.  We start with a oxygen barrier film called SiloStop (the orange plastic) and then a thicker standard silage plastic is pulled over the top of the oxygen barrier.  The plastic is white on the top to help reflect the heat.  Sand is placed around the edge to seal it, and then tires placed on top of the plastic to hold it down:
covering drive over corn silage pileFinishing putting tires on after the rain:

drive over pile with tires

Roughly 520 loads, or 5,200ish tons of corn silage off of 260 acres harvested in 4 days.  Hope it’s enough!

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Summer.

I know I have been neglecting the blog! We have had a very very busy summer to say the least.

We completed an addition to the freestall barns, allowing us to increase our number of milking cows. This will put us up to about 510 cows in the milking barns.

concrete work for free stall barn
free stall barn addition
Hanging lights and fans in the addition:

hanging lights and fans free stall barn

Cows trickling into the addition as the builders finish in the back ground.
IMAG0530
We also did some renovating to the existing free stall barns, ripping off the old tattered curtains to replace them with new curtains that allow more air flow.demoing old curtains free stall barn

Still waiting for the curtains to get here, but the sides of the barn look like this now:

renovating a curtain sidewall free stall barn
With more cows comes more calves!  So we also made a small addition to the maternity barn to make feeding calves easier.

IMAG0625

Built some calf fence:

high tinsel calf fence

And last major project for this year, we broke ground on a new dry cow/maternity barn.


Caterpillar dozer breaking ground
Got most of the fill hauled this week:

fill sand for free stall barn

This barn will be attached to our existing maternity barn (seen in the upper left hand side of the picture) and give our dry cows (cows that are not currently being milked) a more comfortable place to relax then they have now, as well as give more room to our cows that are soon to be calving.

Of course, we also have normal cropping operations to keep up at the same time!

Side dressing nitrogen on corn:
side dressing corn with apache sprayer
Nitrogen is one of the main nutrients that corn needs, “side dressing” corn allows us to get the nitrogen on as the corn is up taking it, lessening the chance of it leaching out of the soil and into our water ways.

Refilling the sprayer.  Notice the drops, the nitrogen sprays out of those drops below the canopy between the rows near the plants roots.
Tending an apache sprayer
We make 4 crops of hay each each summer.  That means every acre of hay is cut, merged, chopped, hauled and packed into a bunker 4 times each summer!

Cutting 4th crop:
cutting hay macdon swather

Zoie helping me cut hay:

IMAG0585

Merging 4th crop: (Merging puts several windrows together so that the chopper and trucks have less ground to cover)

merging hay white 2-135 h&S merger

View from the trucks when we are chopping.  A wireless camera on the spout of the chopper and a display in each truck allows you to see your truck as you are being filled.

chopping claas 900 into trucks cab cam
claas 900 chopping alfalfa into truckMy father in law came and drove truck for us during third crop, he thinks we are crazy for farming some of our hills:

claas 900 chopping into trucks in hillsCutting sorghum-sudan grass for heifer feed, while the neighbors dog catches mice:

dog catching mice sorghum sudan grass

We wrecked not one, but two complete set of knives for the chopper, that gets expensive!
wrecked knives on claas 900

 

Currently we are now getting the corn head all tuned up for corn silage, which will start in about a week or so.

claas 900 corn head tune up
We grow a little bit of wheat.  It is swathed, combined, then the straw is baled:

swathed wheat
john deere 9500 combining wheat
john deere 9500 unloading grain
case ih baling wheat straw
My Dad got some ducks and chickens.  I say he is now the “poultry manager”

IMAG0645

 

Some heifers we are keeping at the neighbors until we can get our dry cow barn done:

heifers

Well, sorry that i didn’t post much this summer, but now you are mostly caught up on our summer!  I will try to post more pictures of the fall harvest.

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First Annual Land Partner and Employee Appreciation Picnic.

We decided to have a little get together for our Land Partners and Employees to come and visit the farm, visit, and of course eat food!

IMAG0458[1]Antique and Modern equipment set up on display for people to check out…quite a difference the years make!

IMAG0462[1]Chef Juan Started smoking meat at 1:30 am!  We had pulled pork, shredded beef, and brats.

IMAG0465[1]Shop all cleaned up and tables set.

IMG_0248The spread.

IMG_0250Have to have a selection of cheese!

IMG_0264Time to eat!

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IMG_0281

Kiddos having fun on the farm.

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Touring the dairy.

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Neat picture, two of Mitch’s kids walking through the barn.

cow

Interested in partnering with us?  Check out http://www.scholzefamilyfarms.com for more info.

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Spring Field Work

It was another challenging spring for us, very wet and late.  Not as bad as last year, but not ideal either!  Definitely put some crops in on the wetter side!  But we got them all in, as well as getting a huge first crop of hay harvested with no rain in it.  Big thanks for the crew putting in long hours to get it all done…and thanks to the wives for putting up with it!

white 8000 corn planterFirst field, just starting to plant corn.

storm clouds gatheringRain about to shut us down…a common sight this year!

white corn planter in no tillNo-till into a cover crop (tillage radish mix)

corn planting at sun setNo-till in to bean stubble at sunset.
in field fixIn the field fix.
seeding alfalfa in hillsSeeding alfalfa in the hills.

narrow row white corn planterWe planted most of our silage corn with our bean planter in narrow (19″) rows.  It was slow going with this small planter, but on the plus side, having two planters going, even if one is small, is always faster then just one!

cute farm kid in tractor
cute farm kids in tractorHelpers!  Kiddos love to get rides!

seed tendingSeed, fertilizer, fuel…..keep the planters rolling!

dairyland seed alfalfa plotHarvesting samples in our haylage test plot.

claas 960 chopping hay into truckWe had a small fire in our chopper…thanks to our neighbor for keeping us rolling.  Allowed me to grab a couple pictures of them chopping for us.

claas 960 chopping into truckI’m not used to this view when we are chopping!

windrow of hay

 

Back in our chopper!  Luckily we got the fire out quickly, and Delbert worked tirelessly to get our machine back up and running that night.  Also special thanks for my wife for going on a three hour parts run on a Thursday night after work to get us parts!

packing bunker after darkFinishing packing the (2nd!) bunker of haylage at about 1:30am on Saturday morning.

Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/scholzefamilyfarm  As well as checking out our official website: http://www.scholzefamilyfarms.com

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White 2-135 Build

Had a request in the comments for more pictures of the progress on the White 2-135 in the last post.

Tear down:

white 2-135 tear down
Paint:
painting white 2-135white 2-135 tractor paintEngine going back in:

putting motor back in white 2-135

Putting sheet metal back on:

white 2-135 rebuildFinished product:

restored white 2-135Really sharp tractor, a lot of work done on it it is for sale so if you are interested call me: 608-772-3659.  Field ready.

More shop work, getting the chopper ready for haying season.  Mounting new flighting on auger, so that it feeds hay in better:

working on claas 900 chopperAdded a decal:
scholze family farms chopperAnd a modern day cattle drive, rounding up some escape calves:

modern day cattle drive
Still soggy around here, and haven’t been getting any field work done.  Really hoping it will dry out a bit soon!

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Long Over Due!

I know I am long over due for a post!  A long cold winter had me in the posting doldrums.  Just didn’t seem like there was that much interesting going on and no one wants to hear complaining about how cold it was!  Many of these pictures are repeats from out facebook page.  So if you aren’t all ready, “like” us on facebook!

Painting Dad’s 660:

painting an oliver 660 dieselFinally got it finished!  My Dad has always wanted a 660 Diesel:

oliver 660 diesel restored
On the subject of painting tractors, picked up a White 2-135 that we are fixing up to sell.  Throwing a quick coat of paint on that as well:

painting White 2-135
I like this picture of a group of heifers munching away on grain:

heifer calves

Rounding up older heifers from their pasture:
open range heifers

Zoie and Owen playing in the commodity shed:

farm kids playing in feedWe bought the neighbors herd to help us fill our barn addition this spring, here we are loading them out of his barn:

cows in tie stall barnI wish this was a video! The new cows spent a couple of days bellering once we got them home.  Here are the ones we hauled to the dry cow lot, grouped up and bellering:

dry cow lotA new experiment for us, raising a few feeder steers.  Here is our first group waiting to get loaded up to go to a feed lot:feeder steersJust took these pictures today, Theo helping a newborn calf start breathing.  The calf had inhaled some fluid as it was being born, and was unable to breath.  We have a device that helps suck the fluid out, and them forces air back in to help get the calf breathing.  Combined with some rubbing, as well as licking from Mama, the calf is soon breathing on its own:
resuscitating a new born calf

resuscitating new calf

cow with new calf
Well, it looks like we may be getting into the field soon, so hopefully I will soon have pictures of spring field work.

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