20 Jun Laura: Combines, combines EVERYwhere!
Southeast Colorado – Not that long ago, the wheat crop was several weeks behind schedule. With strong winds and hot temperatures, nature has kicked in gear in a big way, and crops have made up ground in terms of maturity. As the kids and I traveled across Highway 50 and Highway 160 in Kansas on June 15, combines of all colors, makes, and models could be seen in their natural habitat doing what they do best.
We have been cutting just a few miles inside the Colorado border in the south east corner of the state. We don’t have any official stats at the time of this posting, but it looks like yields so far are in the 30+ bushel per acre range. Our farmer is pleased with the results.
With precipitation usually under 20 inches per year (according to NOAA), it can be tough to raise a good crop out here. One way our farmer fights this issue is to incorporate a fallow season into their cropping rotation. For our readers who need a brief tutorial, this is the practice of allowing a piece of ground to “rest” for a season. This allows moisture to build up in the soil profile to be used for the next planned crop. It is very important to control weeds in this practice for they can zap the precious moisture from the “bank” and defeat the purpose of the fallow period.
Below are some photos I snapped after I met back up with the crew! I had taken a few days break to tackle the mail that had been accumulating back home while we were down south.
All Aboard Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and John Deere. Laura can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.