South Central Montana - Combines have continued to roll in the same area so there’s not that much new to report regarding the crew. I thought I would make a simple post highlighting the beauty of the area using pictures.

Speaking of pictures, my phone, while getting older but seemed to be in mint condition, quit without warning just prior to the weekend. I had intended to use some nice panoramas for this post. I had recently backed up and pulled pictures off my phone but hadn’t done it for the last couple weeks yet. It remains to be seen if

South Central Montana: Harvest continues out here in south central Montana. As mentioned in a previous post, we are hauling into onsite bins. Therefore, protein and test weights aren’t available. Yield ranges have been in the 70s. These are dryland acres.

I thought it was time the truckers got a little post. Usually the combines, tractors and grain carts get a lot of attention, because they’re physically harvesting the wheat. Trucks have the a very important role, too, of transporting the grain to a storage facility. For those readers not as familiar with the process, our drivers need a CDL (commercial

South Central Montana: The decision was finally made to wave the white flag and retreat from the field. It was just too green and nothing was going to go. The decision was made to try again Monday, so that gave the crew a short break. After Ryan caught up on paperwork and I on All Aboard posts, we needed to get parts at the John Deere dealership in Billings. We used it as an excuse for family time, went to lunch and followed that up with a trip to Pictograph Caves and Pompey’s Pillar. The day before I took the

Southern Montana - The crew has been reunited in Montana. We were very fortunate because the first load went up without a hitch. The second round had only one blown out tire and it was fixed quickly. One blown tire out of 164 tires on the second trip, yes, we’ll count that as success. With that many people on the road, heavy equipment, ports and permits, you can imagine moving is a stressful time. We want everyone, our crew and those around us, to remain safe.

I know there is a lot going on during moving days, so I proposed that

Northeast Colorado - This stop is normally one of my favorite places to photograph the crew. It’s deep blue skies, wide open spaces, and gorgeous sunsets does not disappoint. However, this year, when we finally made it back into the field, the air hung heavy. There was very little breeze, which caused the dust to linger making it difficult to see the action properly. This does not make for very photogenic harvest pictures and why I’m lacking them! The wildlife was willing to pose though!

Yields were all over the place. We had anything from 30 to over 50 bushels per

Morgan County - I thought I was going to be late to the party. Some things back home delayed my departure to northeast Colorado. Upon arriving, Ryan thought they’d have around three more days of cutting, and we would head to Montana that weekend. As it turns out, we ran into some green wheat which extended our time planned in Colorado. Montana wasn’t quite ready anyway, so it timed out fine.

When I got to Colorado, they were just starting to play the hunt and peck game for dry wheat. By dry, I’m referring to the moisture of the grain, not

Morgan County, Colorado - I thought you may be interested to learn about Sawfly, a pest that has been present in the area we are cutting.  The following is a very brief overview.

The adult female deposits eggs in the developing wheat plant.  Despite laying many eggs, only one larva will survive.  The larva will begin to mature and move down the inside of the stem.  Sawfly activity can hamper the metabolic processes of the plant and may reduce yield.  The damage to the stem also causes lodging creating harvestability issues.  This damage is due to a v-shaped notch larva cut

Morgan County, Colorado:  Disclaimer – If you are here for crop stats, skip this post.  If you are interested in reading the “life musings” of Laura, continue!

I recently had the opportunity to add to my “community” this spring. Last fall, Tracy Zeorian reached out with the idea for a retreat for women involved in harvesting. I don’t know what it was, but something inside just told me I NEEDED to be there. However, I didn’t know how I was going to make it happen.

The event was scheduled for early April. I knew Ryan would be ramping up harvest plans and we

Sheridan County, Kansas:

Laura describes what has happened to her family's crop.

Sad looking wheat. (Photo credit: Laura)

Wheat belongs in the bin, not the ground. (Photo credit: Laura)

The latest crop of HPH mascots are at the farm. (Photo credit: Laura)

Equipment headed to Colorado. (Photo credit: Laura)

I think the saying goes something like this, “The only thing that is certain in life is death and taxes.” This year, I would modify the end to read, “death, taxes, and hail.” There seems to be so much hail damage this year. The area surrounding our headquarters had the privilege of the white experience, as well,

Greeley County, Kansas: On Sunday after church, as I was cleaning and packing up the camper, Little Man asked, “Mom, why do we have to leave already? I haven’t had enough fun yet!” You see, the kids really enjoy the Tribune/Sharon Springs area as do I. They both have friendly people, great pools with slides, clean, exciting, parks, community-run movie theaters, and even a bowling alley. It is not a problem finding something fun to do. It is a harvest kid’s dream.

This year, however, our run was cut short, hence Little Man’s comment that he hadn’t had enough fun yet.