ELGIN, N.D. – A long event at the Laub farm, harvest runs from August to November as Clarence III and his dad, Clarence Sr., are in the combine cutting wheat to sunflowers and everything in between.
The family has been used to long harvests, growing spring and fall crops for many years now.
“Our wheat has been cut and in the bin and our earliest-maturing CBD hemp is cut and hanging to dry in the shop,” Clarence said.
Their oil sunflowers are out in the fields, turning from green to yellow. The flowers still need some drying time, and with the recent rain over the Sept. 28-29 weekend, the sunflowers have a ways to go before harvest starts.
“We need all the rain we can get; we have seen too many droughts to ever wish it away,” he said.
With all the soil health principles the Laubs follow, including: plant diversity, no-till farming, keeping the soil constantly covered, and integrating cropping systems with livestock grazing, the soil has excellent water infiltration, and rain rarely runs off the soil.
Meanwhile the hemp for grain and the corn for silage are developing well in the fields.
The weather has grown cooler, with temps down in the 40s-50s over the weekend, as the long, steady rain slowly increased subsoil and topsoil moisture.
“We’ll probably be chopping our silage corn this week.” Clarence said.
Soon, it will be time to wean the calves.
“The calves will go into the feedlot after weaning, and we’ll background them until February, when we’ll market them,” he added.
Their cows will start their fall grazing program when the calves are weaned. There will be many harvested crop fields for the cows to graze, leaving plenty of residue.
The cornfields leave lots of goodies in the form of leftover cobs and leaves for the cows to crunch on, and the cowherd always enjoys the regrowth cover crop fields.
Meanwhile, the pasture renovation is continuing.
The Laubs are working on building a new pipeline system that will run to a tank in the newly-defined pastures. That increases the efficiency of the pastures the Laubs will have for their cow/calf herd.
“We are still working on it, and soon, we will start building fence around it,” he said.
With both crops and cow/calves on the farm, the Laubs never really stop for long, but they would not have it any other way.