As 2013 comes to a close, Ohio farmer Daryl Bridenbaugh reflects on the growing season.
The corn harvest in our community was the best ever. The local elevator has a corn pile of over 300,000 bushels on the ground. The bean harvest here wasn't that great. My average was just a little over 50 bu/acre.
In Ohio around 30,000 additional acres were farmed in 2013. Around 10,000 were acres taken out of CRP and the rest were acres taken out of pasture. It was depressing to read about pasture acres being farmed in Iowa that were highly erodible ground. The Associated Press article said that ethanol production was having a negative environmental impact because of the sensitive acres being brought into corn production. In my neighborhood people are knocking out fencerows and hacking away at the edges of woods to obtain more farmable ground. I've read that someone bought a golf course and turned it into farm ground and someone plowed up an old cemetery. Both were in the Midwest.
I've taken several trips across the state of Ohio this year. It's been interesting to see changes in the countryside. Some farms that never seem to show any improvement have put up new bins and have some new equipment sitting around. I've never seen more barns being built. It's partly because of the windstorm we had in Ohio in 2012 that damaged a lot of the old barns and partly because people just have more machinery and more things in general to store.
I will plant some sandy fields to Liberty Link soybeans in 2014 because that seems to be where the worst marestail problems are. I rented a Case IH 330 disc and lightly went over most of my corn stubble ground to knock out small marestail that emerged this fall. Some neighbors both sprayed and disced their ground and others chiseled it to kill marestail.
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