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Posts Tagged With: planter

Hope Springs Eternal

For a farmer, spring is hope.  No matter how poorly last year’s crop grew, despite the prices at the grain elevator, and against the odds of droughts, hail, insects, flood, and other calamities, we put seeds in the ground.

Everyone gets excited about spring planting on the farm!  {DaddysTractor.com}

Last week Daddy showed up in the field that is our front yard (at bedtime, please ignore the pajama-clad kids) to plant the first test rows.

Planting begins on the farm (and everyone's excited!  {DaddysTractor.com}

He drove the tractor a few yards into the field and stopped to see how the planter was working.

Planting begins on the farm (and everyone's excited!  {DaddysTractor.com} Planting begins on the farm (and everyone's excited!  {DaddysTractor.com} Planting begins on the farm (and everyone's excited!  {DaddysTractor.com}

Daddy looks in the rows created by the planter to see how deep the seeds are, how close together they fell into the ground, if there are spaces where the planter skipped seeds or dropped a double.

Planting begins on the farm (and everyone's excited!  {DaddysTractor.com}

Daddy has invested equipment from a company called Precision Planting that creates add-ons for your tractor and planter to ensure that every seed is placed as precisely as possible.  For crops like corn, that can make an impact.

Planting begins on the farm (and everyone's excited!  {DaddysTractor.com}

He’s also checking to see if the wheels on the back of the planter are doing a good job covering the seeds back up with soil.  If you look carefully at the above photo you’ll notice one round, black wheel paired with one spiky looking one.

The ground was too wet to use the spiky wheels, so Daddy had to take the planter back to the shed and changed each spike wheel to a matching black one.

When he came back the next morning I was able to grab a few pics of him unfolding the planter.  This piece of machinery is 60 feet wide and couldn’t possibly get down the road like that!

Spring planting on the farm.

This planter folds in three places, with the two side sections bending forward to align next to the bar that pulls it behind the tractor.

Spring planting on the farm.

The sections swing out and the bar that pulls behind the tractor actually shortens to give more control while Daddy is driving.

Spring planting on the farm.

When the sections lock into place its ready, planting more hope in the ground as it goes.

 

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Categories: Farming | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Farmer Brett Birthday Cake

I did not tell Brett it was okay for him to turn eight years old, but he has gone and done it anyway.  Not being given much choice I agreed to make him the birthday cake he wanted.

When Brett turned two years old I got to plan his whole birthday party and choose all the cutest stuff myself.

Farmer Brett Birthday party  {DaddysTractor.com}

I spent hours making an unrealistic but totally adorable toy dump truck looking cake.

Even when he turned five I had lots of design input.

Farmer Brett Birthday party  {DaddysTractor.com}

The official title of this party was “A tractor, A cart, A combine, and Two Semi Birthday.”

But now I have a grown-up farmer on my hands and only the most true-to-life cake is allowed.

I started with two round cakes to make the number eight.  Brett looked and looked at cakes in the shape of a four and five on his Pinterest board, but eventually picked a rectangle cake because it was the most realistic.  My plan was to surprise him with the eight he wanted and the decoration from the other.

Farmer Brett Birthday party  {DaddysTractor.com}

That’s Oreo cookies mixed with chocolate icing and green grass piped from a Wilton 233 tip.  It was super easy since the grass doesn’t have to be perfect!

Then I (thoroughly!) washed the tractor and planter he chose from his collection.

Farmer Brett Birthday party  {DaddysTractor.com}

I wanted all red equipment, to make the cake cute.  Brett wanted the planter and tractor just like Daddy’s.

Planting time on the farm

Our Case IH tractor pulls a John Deere planter– proof that it can be done! 🙂

Reluctantly I added them to the dirt icing,

Farmer Brett Birthday party  {DaddysTractor.com}

and used a toothpick to make the marks in the soil from the row openers.

Farmer Brett Birthday party  {DaddysTractor.com}

This was a bit of a risk because I single-handedly chose to make marks for corn, not soybean seeds, and Brett had wanted to be planting into cornstalks.  Since we plant on a rotational bases, this would mean the planter was planting soybeans, but Brett’s idea for making cornstalks was broken toothpicks.  I told him we could put broken toothpicks on top, but we wouldn’t be able to eat it.

Farmer Brett's Birthday Cake  {DaddysTractor.com}

So I guess we compromised and I think it turned out cute and realistic.  Because believe me, more of our farms are shaped like a number eight than a rectangle!

Categories: Family | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

This Situation is Critical!

It’s literally the most important thing that happens on our farm and it’s happening now!  Just ask the little red hen, if you want to eat the bread, first you have to plant the seeds!

Planting time on the farm

Our Case IH tractor pulls a John Deere planter– proof that it can be done! 🙂

Planting time is the most intense season on the farm.  There are an estimated 10 days that are just right for planting corn in our area.  Even if we had perfect conditions (which we won’t) and no break downs (that won’t happen either!) there is no way we could plant all our corn in 10 days.  But we try.

Planting time on the farm

Daddy has added lots of Precision Planting parts to the planter, making sure every seed counts!

During the first two days of our planting season the tractor ran around the clock.  Grandpa traded off with Daddy in the middle of the night so Daddy could get a few hours of sleep.

planting time on the farm

Anna helps Daddy check that the planter is working by digging up a row and looking at the seeds.

It’s also not just putting seeds in the ground that is so time-sensetive.  Daddy got out of bed a the usual time the next morning so Grandpa could put on fertilizer and crop protection products, which are every bit as critical.

planting time on the farm

Daddy drove away with a piece of pizza in hand– no time to stop for dinner!

Monsoon-like rains put an end to our field work late Saturday night and this morning there is snow on the ground.  Like I said, we won’t be getting ideal weather!  The weather man says we should be in the mid 60s again in two days with lots of wind as well, so the ground will dry out and we’ll be back in the fields.  While not ideal by any means, the snow shouldn’t stop the seeds from growing once the weather warms up.

Just please weather, do warm up!

Categories: Family, Technology | Tags: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Getting Ready for Spring Planting

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

The sun seems a bit shy this year, but despite the cold, Daddy is getting ready for spring planting! Today’s task is getting the planter ready. The planter is one of the most important pieces of equipment on our farm because it puts the seeds into the soil.  Without that, there is nothing to farm!  Getting each seed at the right depth with soil pushed in on all sides is a big goal, but Daddy keeps working to make that happen.  After purchasing the planter we have now, Daddy took off many of the parts it came with and replaced them with parts from a company called Precision Planting.  And each spring he checks each part, replaces broken pieces, oils, cleans and otherwise repairs the planter.

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

Here you see Daddy using a tourch to remove a bolt that was stripped.

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

This is the part he was working on.  These are 16 of these on the planter and each one must be in perfect working order!

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

To adjust the row openers Daddy crawls in under the planter.  All is well and good until he needs a tool and has to crawl back out to get it!

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

Brett, Anna, and the farm dog Ben are great help to our hired man, Cory.

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

But Cory gets the job done anyhow!

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

The planter isn’t the only piece of equipment that must be prepared for spring.  In this photo you see a line-up of the tractors and the equipment they run that are ready for the sun to start shining!

This shows farmers getting equipment ready for spring planting—so cool!  {DaddysTractor.com}

The green and yellow thing on the end may look like the planter, but actually its a drill.  A drill does the same job as a planter- it puts seeds into the ground- but it does it a different way.  We use the drill to plant seeds that aren’t as picky about perfection, like wheat.  Some of our soybeans are planted with the drill too.  There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to plant everything with the planter.

What about you?  Are you as ready for spring as I am?!

Categories: Technology | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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