Thursday, May 3, 2012

Work While You Can

So it was rainy over the weekend and was cool and cloudy till late yesterday afternoon, so no planting was done until this afternoon when a few fields were deemed fit for planting.  After a cool week, the temperature was in the upper 80's this afternoon.  Although the sugarbeet experiments were established last month, we are planting a demo plot for the NCRS Research Field Days later this summer.  This will show some side-by-side comparisons that growers can see up close.  Since it has been awhile since the last planting, Tim and Stephanie check seed depth and spacing before the plot is planted.
A quick check to make sure that all the fertilizer tubes are clear and putting out Liquid nutrition....
...and they're off!  Down the stretch he comes!  (Getting ready for the Kentucky Derby on Saturday.)  They also planted some different corn strips of the new drought tolerant corn.  This spot can be dry.  So if you want to see how all of this turns out, you had better make plans to be at the Research Field Days.  Go to for what you need to know.
Next we see Brian and Tim marking off what will soon be potato fertility plots, another popular stop on the Field Day tours.
The new Kinze planter was planting some no-till corn today.  It is a nice planter.  Notice that the marker arm is down.  We have been having some issues of not being able to receive the gps signal on both planters.  It would come and go, so the marker was down just in case.  We are seeking options to remedy this as it does cause frustrating delays.
I stopped by the new orchard this afternoon and was pleased to see leaves growing on the newly planted trees.  The transplant survival rate was very high.  I must have walked 10 or 20 feet and did not see a single dead tree.  Nice job guys.
What are you looking at?  I mean, nice doggy!
I thought I would throw this in.  Tonight Cathy and I went to a charity event hosted by Michigan State head football coach Mark Dantonio and his wife Becky.  He's a nice guy and generous to take time for this.  The Spartans were 11 and 3 last year, co-Big 10 champions, won the Outback bowl and finished 11th in the AP poll.  But, just as in the fertilizer business, it's always "Last year is over, what are you doing for me now?"  OK that may be a stretch.  Football is probably hard too.
So I told you last week that I was going to go see one of our experiments by some researchers in Missouri.  Well I was there on Monday and this is what the field looked like.  Unfortunately, the Liquid experiment is in the back end of this field.  So it looks like a return visit will be necessary.
Unfortunately it rained very hard this evening, and it doesn't look good for more planting anytime soon.  But I was wrong once before.