Farmerjan's journal - Weather

farmerjan

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Done for the night. Chickens locked in....
Dug 2 more short sections of potatoes... planted along the side where the pine trees are and not very good production, but nothing does very good along there... didn't think of it when I planted them... I will have to probably "retry" these 2 varieties planted in a better area...the one had very poor production, the other got better as it got further into the garden away from the pine tree side... still have another partial of that one kind to dig....will try to get it dug tomorrow so I can weigh the total amount. Brought more of the pontiacs to the house under the shade of the maple... will get the rest to the house tomorrow morning, and then will see about weighing them... Interested to see how big/heavy some of them are.. I would say 1 lb or more, on a bunch of them...

Packed and took samples down to UPS store and made a bank deposit to pay the car insurance... :duc :duc :duc :mad: :mad: :mad: :he:he:he. Need to find out if they got an appt to get the stupid computer "reprogrammed".....then get it sold. Car dealers are asking for used vehicles again... hear the ads on the radio so good time to get rid of it with 4wd and all that...

Tomorrow I will be on the tractor for awhile, raking the orchard grass hay and maybe the sorghum... will see how things go. Need to look at the forecast also. Might do the OG mid day, and let the sorghum dry more then do it late afternoon so it will be turned up to dry the underneath part the next day. I am assuming that DS will sq bale the OG on Wed... and then can roll the sorghum on Thursday... plus any in the OG field that is along the edges/treeline and such where there might be more leaves and weeds and such... Need to talk to him tomorrow to make sure that "suits him"....

Brought tea in and forgot to thaw the lemonade so it will get mixed here shortly.
Stomach just growled... no wonder it is after 9 p.m.

Got the chicken carcass in a pot of water to make some broth/soup from... cut the rest of the breast meat for a sandwich....
 

farmerjan

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Up and temp only got down to 60 last night. Mostly sunny again today, maybe a few high clouds... up near 80. It hit 82 yesterday on the recording thermometer...

Sun is starting to peek over the trees across the road. Dew on the grass. I will go out and try to get that other partial section of the one variety of potatoes dug so they are all done and can get weighed all together... They are an all red variety called Adirondack Red... very pretty when digging... haven't cut any open yet but are supposed to be pinkish/red all the way through.

Breakfast was toast and apple butter, getting dressed and going out to hopefully get the rest of the Adirondack potatoes dug, and all of them to the house under the maple tree in the shade to dry and then get my butt down to get the tractor and rake and fuel it up and go rake hay. Can't get out there much before 10-10:30 with the heavy dew on the grass...
 

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Not turning out to be a very good day. Chickens out and did get the rest of the Adirondack red potatoes dug. Was a decent amount.. left out to dry and will get them to the house this evening... Brought rest of red pontiacs to house under tree. Paid a couple bills on line and wrote check for personal property tax on subaru 2001 outback..... this county is totally insane on the taxes... have the explorer "registered" in the county north as taxes are much better, and I did the dmv work there and just used my p.o. box address as I have in the past... one reason to keep the p.o. box as it is in the other county.... not going to keep paying through the nose for things. My 2000 forester has "aged out of the system at over 20 yrs old, but this county where I live doesn't do that... mailed check so it was postmarked at the p.o. date due is 5th and has to be postmarked by that date... today is the 3rd so I am good... won't have to pay a penalty regardless of when the mail gets there...

Went to the farm after a text conversation with DS.... about what was cut and where... he cut more than I thought... and as I started out back on the old rr track bed, that is the road to the back fields, where I left the tractor and rake when I got done with it... came upon this BIG tree that had come down across the road. No way around it and it has multiple big branches/limbs holding it up and no way would I think about tackling it... I do not like to use a chain saw... evidenced by the brand new dewalt battery saw that has never been out of the box.... so, texted DS and told him about it and that no way could I get around it.... He said, OH NO... and would be up to look at it sometime... and I said that I would be available this afternoon whenever I could get the tractor and rake out, to do stuff...
Soooooo... no raking at this point. It will probably be after he gets off work before he can at least get it cleared out enough to get back there. There is a way to get out back through several fields and gates... pita.... but have no idea if there are any trees down in those areas since it goes through some woods and all... and not a place I want to try to take my forester.....

So, I just ate another tomato and lettuce sandwich for lunch, and am going to go out and if the sun stays behind the high clouds, will probably try to dig some more potatoes for a bit I guess.... Bring in the clothes off the line too while I am out there.
Guess I will be raking late this afternoon.... oh well, best laid plans...
 

farmerjan

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Done and in... chickens locked in. It is already dark out by 7:15 now....

DS texted me shortly after I ate sandwich and said he was going to do tree and it would be 20 min or so and road would be passable... So, I never did go out to the garden and did not get clothes in... went down a bout 3:15 and I could get back there... jim was cleaning up some of the branches still... and got tractor and rake and headed up to barn. DS came in just as I got up to fuel tank to put fuel in tractor.... and asked if I already raked out back... and I said no, I thought you mowed that after the OG at your barn and the sorghum across from my house... and he said no, he mowed out back first... but it didn't matter... so I just left and came up to the sorghum field across from my house and raked it... then went to his barn and got it all raked... went back to doug's out back where my car was and said that's enough. It was already after 6... came out and he was at his green barn (OG field) and stopped for a few minutes... he got the one field tedded out...sorghum that was across the creek.... and said the rest was ready to bale. And he had already gone up and baled the sorghum field across from my house... I guess when I was at the green barn...... said he didn't want to leave it all for wed/thurs.....

So tomorrow I will go rake the stuff that is ready out back of doug's...
Might try to do some potatoes in the morning before the sun gets too warm on the garden area... and get the laundry off the line that I didn't get today.
No farms have gotten back to me yet....
Down to 20% chance of precip now for Friday night... he might cut more hay if it fizzles out.....
Supposed to go get the cattle out of WV on Sunday but Doc wants to ride with him (he owns the place and has done the cattle on shares the last 2 years but now just doesn't feel he is up to it anymore.... late 70's, lots of joint problems, that sort of thing). So I might not go... which is fine...
Lindsay is away until Sunday, so the 500 cow herd will be next week... got to contact them... their vet is Monday so it will have to be after wed.....

I'm going to quit and go to bed early....
 

farmerjan

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Wed night. Chickens in and I dug more potatoes for a bit this evening...Picked up the rest of the Adirondack Red ones that the dirt was dry and brought them to the house. Dug the row of Russian banana fingerlings and part of the row of French fingerlings (red skin). They are big for fingerlings... but it was getting dark so I quit. Temp was a comfortable 65 out this evening.

I did go up and rake the grass hay at the one field at a business 1/4 mile down the road that we make... then raked the long smaller section of sorghum and the 4 acres of the grass hay next to it that he cut... it was sparse.... but he cut it just cuz he was right there and it gets all the weeds "cut off". The field he tedded across the creek of sorghum wasn't quite dry enough to rake. If sorghum isn't dry enough it just won't rake and leaves all sorts of it behind so no sense in doing it. It will be dry enough to rake tomorrow I am sure... I will go do that... might take an hour at most to do it...
DS was going to sq bale a wagon load of the OG at his green barn and then roll the rest. .... then roll the sorghum and other grass hay... might not get it all done this evening... but it will be there for him to do. It is thin, so won't take as long nor make so many bales... He will be able to finish up tomorrow eve I guess...

20-40% chance of showers/rain for Friday night and Sat morning so I don't think he will cut anymore before then. It is supposed to be fast moving and then a chill come through... temps will be 10-15 degrees colder than normal...nights in low 40's or even upper 30's....days not much above 60... then moderate. And no more precip in the forecast for another week. I think he will cut the one field of OG there in the back at doug's... he has some people wanting some sq bales.
He is now getting $10/ sq bale for the OG..around 50 lbs.....off the wagon and more if we wind up stacking it in the one barn.... and $12 delivered to the one long time horse customer and she says he is not charging enough. He does put it in her barn for her and stack it. She is a really nice person and has been getting hay for over 20 years from us.
He is going to put the field that has the sorghum across from me into OG I think.,... seems that there is a never ending demand for it. It is due to go into OG or into corn and I don't think he wants to haul the corn that far...
 
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farmerjan

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One another note, our Virginia Poultry Breeders club is going to have their 60th anniversary show this Nov. Looking forward to it and the possibility of finding some of the NH chickens I want. Also, haven't been since my ankle replacement over 3 yrs ago... covid and all that then the knees...
Anyone in the area interested I will send details or you can go on Va Poultry Breeders and it will tell you all about it.

And Wades Mill, the grist mill I used to work part-time at for years, is having their annual Apple Butter and Fall festival on Oct 21st.... Kinda nice to not be working it, but I do miss it sometimes. Changed owners a few years ago and they have made it more of a "destination" type thing; as well as still running it and selling stone ground flour and things...
And, this Sat, Oct 7th is McCormick Farm Day.... where Cyrus McCormick invented the reaper to mechanically harvest grain... they have a huge fall festival that day too... both McCormick's and the Mill are within 5-6 miles of me....
Need to stop at the one neighbor down the road from DS's green barn that has the occasional farmer's market thing... see about a "booth/table" for the potatoes; at the next one they have... got to get the rest of them dug... I am working on it little by little... actually it is going pretty good... got to get a couple of boxes so I can keep them separate as I weigh them... and then I can bag some in like 2 lb size bags.... and do a display of the different kinds...

Now I am headed for the shower and bed.
 

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Those 2 festivals sounds like lots of fun, take the time and go!
Orchard grass sounds like a good grass. It’s too hot here for it. Does it reseed itself or does it come back from the roots? I want to expand my winter cool season grasses and I’m ok with grass that does back in the spring or goes dormant. Does frost kill it?

I have a type of brome, according to Apple phone picture ID. It gets about a foot and half tall, real leafy and the sheep love it. It’s coming out now because of the small rains we’ve had, still keeping sheep off the fields so it can grow. Got 2 1/2” last night, still light rain falling, will move on out shortly. REALLY needed this rain!
 

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Long day and I ache... Got up and went out to the garden and dug more potatoes. There was a heavy dew and fog this morning... Burned off but the sun didn't stay out long... Clouded over and was mostly cloudy with a little sun a couple times. Temps were from 55 up to barely 70. Actually comfortable.
Got a couple more sections/rows dug and put the potatoes alongside the rows to dry. Then I went to the field and raked the sorghum he tedded... it was still too green and was hard to rake... I raked it in pretty much single rows so it would dry more. Texted DS to let him know that it was still pretty green but never heard anything back.

Then went to 2 pastures to check cows and water. One of mine just had a new calf... so that was good. Also put out a salt blocks at the pastures too. Tomorrow I need to go into the nurse cow pasture and give them more salt. There was a 1/2 block in there the last time...

Went out after I got back, and finally got the clothes in off the line.
Then went back out to the garden and dug 2 more rows of potatoes. 4 more varieties... Some were good yields, and some were mediocre...
I have 2 1/2 rows left to dig... Maybe I can manage that tomorrow before we get rain and it gets colder... Would be good to get it done..
I do have the "sprouted ones" along one edge of the garden to also see what kind of production they made... but I will get to them eventually.
Carried one very FULL to the top, 5 gallon bucket of the Russian Banana Fingerlings to the house that I gathered... will try to get all the rest that are dug up tomorrow since they ought to have the little dirt on them dry and will brush off.

The rest of the French Fingerlings...red skin... are pretty nice... good sized for fingerlings. and the other variety, "La Ratte"... produced more than the Russian banana row. Very very productive.
The Gold Rush Russet potatoes (regular sized) are real nice and well formed....most are all even sized, ought to make real nice baked potatoes.

I also managed to step on a board that had a nail in it and it did go through the sneakers and into my foot. Bled pretty good. I had a tetanus shot before my ankle replacement so only about 3 1/2 years so should be fine. I will watch it. Hurt like a #@#%, but then it was fine. Did that after I got the clothes and before I dug more potatoes...It doesn't bother me now but might be sore in the morning.

Need to move the sorghum off the field across the road tomorrow... supposedly DS has someone that wants it but he won't be able to get it til next week... and they are supposed to "rip" the ground in the next few days...it has several bad dips and such that are a pita to plant...and then DS is going to plant it in Orchard Grass he said. He has another field that is getting played out... alot of fescue in it now and he is going to put it into sorghum or into corn next year after first cutting...

I am tired, sore and am going to eat and get a shower and go to bed in a bit...hope that I am not too sore in the morning and can get the rest of the potatoes dug... then getting them all weighed out to record the production. But if I can get them dug, then moved to the house, then they will be out of the garden. I closed the netting since the chickens were scratching and had moved some of the ones laying on the ground drying, around.

Hey @Bruce ... how did your potatoes turn out?
 

farmerjan

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Those 2 festivals sounds like lots of fun, take the time and go!
Orchard grass sounds like a good grass. It’s too hot here for it. Does it reseed itself or does it come back from the roots? I want to expand my winter cool season grasses and I’m ok with grass that does back in the spring or goes dormant. Does frost kill it?

I have a type of brome, according to Apple phone picture ID. It gets about a foot and half tall, real leafy and the sheep love it. It’s coming out now because of the small rains we’ve had, still keeping sheep off the fields so it can grow. Got 2 1/2” last night, still light rain falling, will move on out shortly. REALLY needed this rain!
Orchard grass grows from the roots... a planted stand will last 4-8 years on average. The stand at his green barn has been there 10 or more but there is alot of fescue coming up in it. I don't think it will make it down south in the heat. Just like Timothy hay does not do good here... it likes it cooler... that is what we had up north as the "premiere horse hay"....
It is going to cost nearly $500/acre... with fertilizer and seed and working the field and planting... to establish it... WAY more expensive as it used to be. Seed used to be $20 for a 50 lb bag... it is now over $50 / 50 lbs... Costs as much as corn to establish the stand now...
So if you get 5 years that is $100/ year cost... but that is only for establishing it... there is fertilizer and all that after every cutting and the costs of making the hay... Totally insane...No wonder hay costs have gone up so much...
 

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