Tuesday, September 25, 2012

There and Back Again

So early this morning I drove up to Mt. Pleasant (not sure where the "Mt." is, it's flat as a table there) to meet Sales Account Manager Kurt.  Then we drove out to the Thumb of Michigan to check on some corn plots we have out there.  For non-Michiganders, hold out your left hand, palm out, fingers together and thumb at an angle away from the hand.  Your hand is now the lower peninsula of Michigan, and the thumb is that area surrounded on 3 sides by Lake Huron.  It is called the thumb.  Clever, huh?  Anyway, there are two corn experiments out there that were established by an operation called TARE: Thumb Area Research and Education.  It is part of the extension service of MSU for replicated plot research of things of interest to area farmers.  So we worked with them to set up some nitrogen sidedress plots.  Meeting us was Jim Vincent who is the Research Technician who did much of the work and built the sidedress equipment. He used to do some work with new NCRS agronomist Tim.  That's Jim on the left with Kurt.  It was a nice day, and the plot here looked good.  It had been dry, but had gotten good rain later in the summer.  But it looks like it will yield well.  Hopefully we will learn something about products and rates. 
The ears were full to the tip and many had extended past the husk. 
Being near Lake Huron and lake breezes, there are many windmills going up out there.  On good farmground.  Not sure how I fully feel about all of that.  One big concern, beyond the looks and dead birds, is that now many acres are not going to be able to receive aerial applications.  But power is needed I guess.
Back to the NCRS in the afternoon.  Doug and I took a drive around to check on some things.  Here is one of the oilseed radishes that we planted for a cover crop after wheat harvest.  They have been nicked by frost, but should keep growing as it will be warm for awhile now.
Phil, new Tim and Stephanie had been busy harvesting soybeans for much of the day.  They harvested four experiments on this first day of soybean harvest.  We got there just as they were finishing for the day (sound familiar?) 
The rest of the week here will be warm and good for much more harvesting of soybeans and tomatoes.  I, however, am leaving on yet another fertilizer mission.  Hope it's a good one with plenty of cool pictures.