The July Halfway Point

July 12, 2023

Holtz Farms Side Dresser

Where has the summer gone? We’re already well into the month which means we’ve hit the July halfway point of summer’s warm sunny days. Our crew has been hard at work in the hot sun while most people are working inside in the cool air conditioning. But we’re not complaining — we like the changing seasons best! We’ve been busy with taking care of our crops. From side-dressing nitrogen on our corn to spraying our second pass herbicide on our crops, we’re on track to having a normal July schedule as a Midwest farmer. Although, we forwent the soybean residual because of the thin stand of our stalks — we’ll have to make another herbicide pass anyways.

June Recap

In June, Ron and Rich supervised the pouring of our concrete pad for our grain dryer — which will be installed at the end of July. The dryer will probably take a day to set and a week to install — which standing at ​40 feet tall, there’s plenty of bolts to insure its stability. Due to the continued dry weather, we’ve started running our irrigation pivots sooner than usual.

What Our Crew Has Been Up To!

Rich continues to mow grass around the field edges and waterways as well as brush-hogging. Shaun has been cleaning 2022 rye seed to make room for our upcoming rye crop. Paul cleaned up all our planting equipment and did some maintenance so that we can put it away in good condition. The team has also done all the preventative maintenance on the combine so that it’s ready to harvest small grains in the coming weeks. Hillsboro John Deere Equipment installed our new Crary Air System on our new 40’ draper grain head for our combine. This neat piece of equipment helps feed the crop into the head more evenly and prevents grain loss — it’s actually a cheap investment with its high return. And last but not least, Tyler’s focus has been scouting the fields, spraying the fields, and making sure the crops have what they need to grow.

Thinking Forward

We’ve started to terminate our winter wheat and harvest our winter rye. Once we take off all the winter wheat, we’ll go in and plant a multi-specie cover crop to better the soil’s health. Planting a cover crop will help keep the ground porous, retain hydration, and prevent erosion which all help with our next round of planting. After the July halfway point, there will be a lot of watching over the crops to see if they need any foliar nutrients, insecticides, and fungicide applications.

In the month to come, we’ll be hoping and praying for rain so that our crops can continue growing. (As I write this we’re getting a good rain — so hopes are high!) Some of our crops are getting rain, there’s just a few fields that are truly parched. In other news, we slapped on a couple new logos for our semi trucks — the Bean Bandit and Cornfield Cadillac (see below for photos). And as always, we’re looking forward to seeing what the weather brings, meanwhile, we’ll just keep doing what we’re the best at doing in the meantime.

[Written by Aysha Holtz]

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