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Janel: North Dakota grasshoppers and honeybees

Southwestern North Dakota–We have been doing well cutting spring wheat here in my favorite wheat state of North Dakota. We had a nine day run of cutting wheat before we caught a rain. It has been all farm yard bin work so far and has been working out pretty good. The wheat has been making 35 to 50 bushels per acre and the test weights have been over 60 pounds per bushel. We just started on some canola today (a 640-acre field) and it is borderline ready to go. The moisture was showing 8.5 to 9.5% and since we are storing it in a bin the farmer prefers it to be 9% or less. It should be ready to go tomorrow, I hope! The yields will probably depend on the variety and planting and blooming dates but I figure it’s around 1,500 to 2,000 pound canola.

There is still a lot of green wheat around. A lot of cutters are sitting around waiting on the wheat to ripen. Some have been lucky enough to work for farmers that have air bins or a dryer so they’ve been cutting a lot of wet wheat and staying busy that way. I am feeling blessed that we’ve been working and have had good cutting conditions and dry wheat to cut. The wheat and canola both are cutting very nicely.

The grasshoppers and honeybees are thick here in southwest North Dakota. The front end of our pickups and trucks get covered and every day I have to wash them off. Grasshoppers thrive in this hot, dry weather and destroy pasture grass and crops. They are really bad for crop production. They cover the ground and crops like snow. The beekeeper industry is large here too so there are so many honeybees around as well.

However, the one thing I love about southwest North Dakota is that it’s such beautiful country at least during wheat harvest. The landscape is so pretty. There are wheat, canola, flax, sunflower, field peas, soybean and corn fields all over. I am enjoying every day that I get to cut wheat and canola here. Our forecast is sunny with highs in the 80s and 90s so we should be able to finish up sometime later this week and then move up north to our last stop on wheat harvest!

Janel Schemper can be reached at janel@allaboardharvest.com.

All Aboard Wheat Harvest is sponsored by Case IH, Unverferth Manufacturing Co., Inc., BASF, Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children, Gleaner, ITC, Westbred, Huskie, Western Equipment, US Custom Harvesters, and High Plains Journal.   

Harvesting wheat in North Dakota.

Cutting the outside round of a field.

Harvesting wheat in North Dakota.

Cutting wheat and it’s always quite the view from the hilltop.

Harvesting wheat on a mile long field.

The view from another hilltop.

A nice wheat crop to cut.

Working the days away.

Harvesting wheat next to a corn field.

Cutting wheat on a smoky day.

While we were cutting one night we had a few rain drops.

A big hill on the way to another field.

The landscape is so pretty here.  I love it!

Moving to another field.

Almost to the next field.

Sunflowers are so pretty at this time of year.

Cutting a mile long field.

Working with dad.

Some pretty flowers I saw in town. Those were the most beautiful flowers ever.

Harvesting wheat in North Dakota.

A beautiful field of sunflowers.

Cutting wheat.

My combine shadow. I love this time of day!

Sunflower fields are so pretty on a summer day.

Just finished another wheat field.

Harvesting wheat.

Harvesting wheat.

Making the first pass through the canola field.

A mile long canola field. I love this!

Harvesting canola in southwest North Dakota.



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