It’s really dry here. The neighbors well pump disappeared and there was a hole 20 feet wide and 20 feet deep!
We got an inch of rain November 17 and more than that Thanksgiving. The fall-seeded crops doubled in size overnight! I don’t ever remember that happening before.
This was another year for the record books. No-till saved my hide once more. The yields were very good for only a 1-inch rain June 12 and a few light showers after that. The 90 days of 90-degree heat took the top-third off our yields, but we still made a little money. I try not to think about the forward contracts that paid less than the grain from the combine or in the bins.
The new R09 inoculant from ABM made 7 bushels more soybeans. The SabrEx trichaderma seed treatment made 10 to 20 bushels more corn, 14 bushels more wheat and 3 bushels more soybeans. That was our bright spot for the year.
There is a new 115-day hybrid with big, pearly kernels that really held up and yielded well in this hot, dry summer. I am going with that hybrid on one-third of my corn acres next year.
I don’t remember so many piles of lime and gypsum remnants as seen this fall. Farmers had a little extra money and plenty of time to get it on. We also might have record acres of cover crops, although the acreage is still quite small and just catching on. The tillage radish is hot news across the continent — yes, even in Canada. Farmers are looking at every tool available to gain an edge in crop production.
It was a good but trying year, but demand has stripped our supplies. That means all our inputs went up, too, so the profit challenge remains. The markets are very volatile.
I hope you had a good year, and from here to 2011. It is right around the corner!