Drought or Hail

Have I ever mentioned how weather is a major factor in farming? Did you know you can’t control weather? It is a great reminder of Who is really in control in life.

This growing season has been a stark contrast to last year. Last year we didn’t have more than sprinkles from the middle of May to the beginning of August. In that same span this year, we’ve had over 20 inches of rain! That’s not a typo. It’s really unbelievable and wonderful. The dry land corn in some places looks just as good as the irrigated to my untrained eye.

This is dry land corn from one of the earliest planted fields.

The problem – seems like there’s always a problem with farmers – is that some rain storms have come with hail. It’s been devastating for some farmers’ fields. Last year we would’ve taken hail to just get some rain. At this point this year if we see red in the radar of a storm, we wish it would go away and we pray it doesn’t have hail. We’d actually take no rain so we wouldn’t have to try to not worry about if it’s going to hail or not.

Brad has several fields near each other that did get hit with some hail last week. Pictures of the actual fields would be more interesting, but all I have is pictures of leaf samples that Brad is going to send in to somewhere that will tell him what his nutrient deficiencies are. The first is from the field that was hailed on the most and the second one is from a field right next to it.

These leaves are taken from where the ear is at on the stalk so obviously the ones above them look worse. At this point the rain has benefitted us more than the hail has hurt us, but we still highly dislike hail. It’s out of our control either way.

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Wheat Harvest Picture 2018

Brad didn’t have any wheat this year and the kids and I were gone when most of wheat harvest was happening. It just so happened, we drove right by Brad’s brother’s harvest equipment on our way home. We had to stop to get our annual picture. We weren’t dressed for the occasion, but we made it work.

Oldest to youngest next to the semi – it’s the tradition. 

Even though we weren’t planning to take this picture, it just so happened that Liza is wearing the same dress Elliana wore in 2012!

Wheat Harvest 2012

Here those two are now!

Here’s a link to last year’s wheat harvest picture where I took the time to hunt down all the previous pictures. I’m running too far behind this year to be so kind.

Stone House

Farmers name their fields. When we first started farming what we called a field wasn’t a big deal because we only rented two fields that we called “the pivot” and “the dry land.” The last couple of years Brad has gained more ground to farm so we’ve had to name new fields. If you only have one field from one landlord then the name is a given – the landlord’s name. When you have multiple pieces from one landlord you have to give them more specific names. We’re super creative.

The Cemetery Piece – bet you can guess what it is near

*Dage House – by the landlord’s house

*Hofer 7 – I have no idea where that number is from.

Blacktop – It’s right where the blacktop stops.

The Sticker Field – named by Liza because it has so many goat heads on the edge of it

The name for this piece is yet to be settled.

Before it was planted

It really is essential to have names or I’d always be lost if we left it to legal descriptions or road names. I’m still lost sometimes.

*I didn’t think I should use the landlord’s name, so I used some other nice names.

Mental Health

The World and Everything in It had a segment on the mental health struggles of farmers recently. I really think they should have also focused on the mental health of the mothers with young children at home during the busy seasons and how about the mental health of the children putting up with that mother.Do they look like children whose dad has been working easily 70+ hours a week for the last eight weeks? Here’s a closer view. This irrigated field and the one pictured below were planted one day apart eight weeks ago. The fact that these fields and the non-irrigated fields have actually had rain on them this month has helped our mental health. That didn’t happen at all last year in June!

We were by the above field visiting a friend, so I asked Brad if he wanted me to take pictures of anything in the field for him. He said just the kids, so we did. That might be the extent of his Father’s Day gift. By the way, if you’re still looking for gift ideas for the father in your life, Emdesign put together some great gift ideas for farmers. They could work even if your dad isn’t a farmer.

Press on my fellow farmer’s wives. You are not alone.

Psalm 34:10 Those who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing.