From the Fields

Ellie Kluetzman

After many sprinkles, rains and downpours during the past two weeks, our corn took off. Our best-looking cornfield has a stand as high as my chest as of this report. Some corn plants continue to catch up but other areas of the same field have reached canopy. We need to remind ourselves that our worst field is actually the food plot for wildlife.

After applying glyphosate to our soybeans the first of the weeds died back, only to reveal our spotty and disappointing bean population. One field had a well-defined area in need of more beans. The cooler soil temperatures had raised heck with germination.

Spraying to kill back water hemp took place 10 days after that initial application of herbicide. But before we did that we needed to make a decision on replanting beans.

Rich and I weighed the pros and cons of replanting, holding up each factor for scrutiny. Fuel and seed were not a problem. Time was not an issue. But we didn’t know how we would squeeze our 15-foot grain drill down the lane to the fields. There’s a fence line on the left and a great stand of corn on the right. Our clearance is likely only about 12 feet.

Then Rich remembered our circa-1950s Minneapolis Moline grain drill. Its 9-foot span is perfect for the small strips we were going to replant. I rode in the back of the Kubota RTV pulling the trip ropes. We’ve almost sold that grain drill twice. Boy are we glad we never did. We planted every bean we had on the farm; our plant date was June 25.

Nearby wheat appears to have been sprayed. Most fields continue to look strong and healthy. Barring storm damage it looks to be a good crop year for those farmers lucky enough to have some.

Alfalfa re-growth after the first cutting looks good to excellent. Silage chopping of rye and oats has started.

Ellie and Rich Kluetzman own and operate an 84-acre cash-cropping farm near Columbus. Both are semi-retired but are steadfast in continuing to farm. The acreage is small, the equipment old, but they love nurturing the deep fertile soil in step with nature – whatever the challenges. They cherish being witness to the Lord’s miracle of turning seed into a bountiful harvest.