During the four seasons of farming – fall, winter, spring, and summer – different tasks have to be done on the farm. I myself enjoy Fall! There is always so much going on, no time to be bored or waste. For most, pumpkins, sweatshirts, and football come to mind. But for me, it is totally different. As a kid I always remember riding in the tractor with my dad, hauling grain to the elevator. Now I have worked at the elevator during harvest and have seen the other side.
Late September to early December is the time where farmers get to see the reward of the growing season. Harvest starts in mid-September, and most do not understand all the work that goes into harvest. Making sure that all crops are dry is the most important. This is important for storage reasons. After crops are out many farmers have some kind of fall practices. Vandenberg Farms uses fall tillage as a practice. Ripping the corn and bean ground helps to create organic matter in the soil.
While working at the elevator, I gained a different perspective. Moving grain from one place to another can be dangerous. For example, one night we were drying corn, and the bin quickly became very full and corn came out the top of the bin! The next day was spent cleaning up all the mess! This was a big mistake and not all of it could be saved. I took the picture below, the morning after the grain spill.
May we all get to see those fields of green turn gold
Early December to late February is now time for rest! After all the crops are out, farmers have time to fix machinery or other projects on the farm. We also purchase our inputs for the next planting season. My family takes the time to travel. As my grandparents get older they like to make a trip to the south and visit friends and family. This year they already have a trip planned for January to Hawaii.
Late March to late June is time to put the crops in the ground. Waiting for the ground to thaw out,and make sure there will not be another frost. The first pass of herbicides and pesticides are applied. Along with crops being planted, there always seems to be new baby kittens as well.
July to early September can be make or break for most farmers. After my dad plants both corn and soybeans, it is time to put on fertilizers and pesticides. I have also worked as a crop scout intern during the summer. I took great pride in helping my family and other farmers produce weed and pest-free fields. I also was responsible for checking the conditions of the fields. After checking the field conditions, I would report to my supervisor and let him know if fertilizer and herbicides can be applied. Weather is the hardest part of being a farmer. Rain is critical in these months but not too much! Too much rain can damage crops, but not enough rain can also damage crops. The perfect amount of rain, sunlight, and heat produces the best crops!
It’s hard to pick a favorite season, when they’re all so great in there own way! Season have always meant something different to me, and I wanted to share those with you.The many events that happen in the different season sometimes go misunderstood. That is why I am sharing, so more people are aware!
My name is Haley Vandenberg, I call Farmington, Iowa, home where I live on our family farm. My dad, uncle, and grandpa, farm 2000 acres of corn and soybeans. As much as I want to go back to the farm, I’m not sure if there is enough for me to do. I am a transfer student from Southeastern Community College where I studied Agriculture Business Management. I have enjoyed my time here as a Leatherneck! I am in my senior year and it still has not hit me yet that I am almost done with school! Thank you for taking the time to read my blog!