Wednesday, May 23, 2012

# 89. or, Time to Seed



 So, when i started this whole thing, something that i thought might be cool, would be to write and send a post to my blog entirely from my phone while in the tractor. Because, after all, if you're going to call yourself, ken-inatractor, it's only going to lend to your credibility.

   For better or worse, here's that effort.

  It's seeding time for me. It's a time of year that i get to spend endless hours and days on end sitting in the seat of a tractor. Really, it's not that bad. It's one of the few times a year when i'm alone and can spend time with my thoughts. (although, that could also be a scary thing too.)

  A lot of other farmers in the area have been seeding for about a week or more now, some are done. That puts me a little behind everyone else. I try to be in the field sometime the week after mothers day. I don't really have a good explanation for that. Farmers that have more acres to get in than i do, have no choice but to get going early. It's still cold here in the mornings and can still freeze. I spend a lot of money on some of this seed and can't see the benefit to having tiny new plants pop out their heads, only to freeze to death and die. But that's just me.

  There's a bit of pride to be taken in seeding. Maybe a little less than there was before everybody had GPS in their tractor. I can remember my dad and others talking about how some farmer's rows were so straight, you could shoot a bullet down them without hitting any plants. Now everybody"s rows are that straight.

  One of the farm-isms that's out there is, as soon as the leaves start to pop out, it's time to get your wheat in the ground. Another one, from an "old-timer" i know always says, when you can drop your pants and sit comfortably in the dirt without getting cold, the ground is warm enough to plant. How many days do you have to sit your pale, bare ass in the dirt before you say "today's the day!" Obviously, that saying was invented by someone who didn't have a major highway next to their land.

  That got me thinking about things that i've learned about seeding. If you ever find yourself in a tractor planting a crop sometime, maybe this will be useful to you.

  1. If you check the tank and think you MIGHT have enough seed to do the small piece, WAY in the back corner, you probably don't and will end up having to come all the way back across the field to get enough to finish.

  2. If you are going to have any major screw-ups happen during seeding, that become embarrassingly evident as the crop starts to grow, revealing large unseeded portions of land, it will ALWAYS be along a major highway or roadside.

  3. You will only ever get stuck in places where nobody is around and you have no cell service.

  4. If there is a major rain cloud bearing down on you and you have less than an acre left to seed before you are finished for the year, you will either break down or run out of seed.

  5. EVERY time the truck that delivers seed and fertilizer runs low and requires shoveling to empty out, will be when the grain cart you are filling is almost full. This will require frequent trips from shoveling in the truck, out and up the ladder to check the cart, then back down the ladder and into the truck to shovel some more, then back again.

  6. When you have land along the highway, you need to try to seed those pieces first. Otherwise, you will end up being the topic of conversation at the coffee shop as to what's taking you so long to get your crop in.

  7. No matter what stage of completion you are during seeding, someone is always going to say " I've been done for 2 weeks now. " As much as you want to, you probably shouldn't smack him.

  8. Someone else is always going to have a bigger unit than yours.

  9. Occasionally, when you least expect it, your GPS will wander off just to screw with you.

 10. This isn't really seeding related but as cool as that new cap looks, it's not going fit exactly right until just before it's time to throw it away.

 ........... I hope at least a few of those are useful. Not counting bad weather, I should be done in 12-15 days. I'm not the last though, i expect to be done about 2 weeks before that one neighbor of mine even starts. :)


 .............it turns out i can't do all the steps from my phone. I had to do the editing on the computer at home. But i did write this post on my phone and transfer it into my blogger profile, so that's at least something?

32 comments:

  1. You are indeed living up to your blog name... ken-inatractor!

    I can just picture you out in the field, plopping your bare ass on the ground to check if the ground is warm enough!

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    1. Thank you Dan. And just an added bit of information, before you plop your bare ass into the dirt, it's a good idea to check for any errant stubble sticking out of the ground. You wouldn't want to have one of those going someplace you'd rather not have it going!

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  2. Wait a minute! You use a tractor to seed?? I just tossed a bunch of grass seed onto some dirt and walked away! There might be more to this farming thing than I first imagined. I might need to take classes...do you offer an apprenticeship? Because if I am ever going to be a homesteader, I need to know things like how many goats can an acre and a half support and what the heck are those tiny black bugs on my lettuce.

    Also, I'm not even going there with the "sit your bare tush on the ground" because 1) that's just kind of creepy and 2) animals POOP on the ground!!! EWWW!!

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    1. What's a little bugs & poop?

      Sorry, don't know anything about goats. It takes about an acre of pasture to feed a cow over the summer and a goat is about 1/5 the size of a cow (maybe?) so, 5-6 goats? I'm just guessing here?

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  3. I can just hear someone saying "Oh, you're just finishing up? Had mine done two weeks ago but I saw Randy down the road just getting started so at least you're ahead of him...." LOL

    And, of course if there is going to be a screw up it's going to be right where every single person can see it!! It's Murphy's Law!

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    1. .......and there's ken, with his ass in the dirt!

      Yes, the mistakes always happen along the highway!

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  4. Bahahaha. I am not even going to get into the discussion of whose unit is bigger.... sorry. I am not a farmer so that's the only item that stuck with me...hehe seriously this was very informative. And how can u do all this on your phone? I can barely do crap with mine, much less compose an entire post!

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    1. It wasn't bad at all! Hey, if you're all about the big units, then so be it?
      Actually, my blogger new post and edit page barely work on my phone. I wrote it out on google documents and copy & pasted it into blogger. I had to edit it and add the picture from home. I tried and tried but I just couldn't make that work on my phone. At the end though, I did push the publish botton on my phone to send it off. I hope it still counts?

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  6. THis was great fun to read, you write well from the tractor! :-) I haven't found trying to actually post from my phone to be very successful either, too clumsy and complicated. But if it affords you time to write a bit and you can transfer it over to post, that's worth the effort because we totally enjoy hearing from you. LOL at all this wisdom above, and yes, farmers do seem to spend a great deal of time speculating on the foibles of fellow farmers! :-)

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    1. Well I know that I can't do all the steps from my phone but at least I know it I'm stricken with a thought, I have an outlet to save it.

      I started with #1 and thought I might be able to think up 3 or so, 10 came quicker than I thought they would. I'm glad it worked out. :)

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  7. Ha! I love the whole little competition thing going on between you guys. I would thrive in that situation and I would be the first to finish! At the same time none of my little sprouts would perish in a freeze! (This is because I live in a fantasy world and can make whatever I want happen - it's very convenient).

    Thanks for the tips. I won't really need them since I'm Hot Tuna - but I appreciate them all the same.

    And.... congratulations on managing most of the post on your phone - and - most importantly, from your tractor! Sort of exciting to think of it :-)

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    1. ......and of course, Hot Tuna gets exactly what she wants! :)

      The phone isn't ideal, but it works in a pinch. Nontheless, it was fun to do.

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  8. This was great. Awesome idea to give us, nonfarm folk a peek into your day! Loved 7 & 8...the things we will compare in the name of competition. It's always something!

    Could you take lots of pictures from your phone and just email them to yourself and edit/write later? I usually take shots on my phone and send them to myself to use in posts later. Yeah - the blogger thing from the phone just makes me wanna cuss. Frustrating! Want to see more pictures! Loved it!

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    1. I use pictures off my phone all the time when I use the computer to post. I just plug it in and drag them to a blog file I created. I am having some trouble resizing them for my blog header but I'm still trying to figure that out.
      I'll try to add more pictures. I worry that the posts will get to long with more pics though and turn people off? My posts tend to get a bit wordy as it is?

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    2. Eh, I am wordy too, and try to be mindful of that but if a post is going to be long, I might give a 'heads up' at the beginning of the post, and those that really want to be there, will linger for the whole thing.

      By the way, I get to return the honor and give you an award - The Kreativ Blogger award! Check it out on my post and play along! You certainly are most unique to me!

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    3. Gosh! I am so surprised by this. I am so glad that the things that fall out of my head can be interesting enough to people to have them come back time and again to see what's new.thank you Carrie :)

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  9. Well this week is a write off due to all this darn rain hey neighbour!! may as well get things all shipe shape for the next go round, no breakdowns. So was that you out in the back field checking the ground? thought you was bird watching glad I didn't come over to chat that would be em-bare-ass-ing wouldn't it?
    Erwin

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    1. Yes, the rain has certainly put a stop to the seeding for a day or so now.

      That would be a little hard to explain, wouldn't it?

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  10. You write better from a tractor than I do sitting with my feet propped up eating a cupcake!

    I think you are smart for not wanting your plants to freeze. If I were a farmer person, I would wait, too!

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    1. WOW, thanks! Truthfully though, i'd rather read what you write than what i do......and i'd like a cupcake.

      about the planting, it's more a time thing than anything. You sow your seeds, you takes your chances.

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  11. I always smile at those unseeded patches in the field. I call them humble patches.

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    1. ......and they're so much better when they are on the neighbor's field! Awesome name for them as well! :)

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  12. Oh yeah, the things I don't miss about living in your neck of the woods! Party line telephones and 'which kid tipped whose cow?' I ain't admitting to nothin'!

    Glad you've got the phone - you could take a picture of those cow-tippers, and then blog about them.

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    1. You lived in my neck of the woods? I'm curious about that!

      I can honestly say I've never tipped a cow. When you spend a good portion of time working with them, hanging out with them for fun isn't so appealing.

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  13. If you have unseeded areas near the highway can't you just say traffic blew them away?

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    1. If only it was that simple.
      It's like washing the truck and driving through the rain shower a half hour later. You can tell people that you had looked after it but they never believe you.

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    2. You saying your neighbours aren't so trusting? I mean, who's to say some big ol' trucks didn't coming whizzing by in a huge convoy and blew half your rows away. Maybe it happens more often than you think.

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  14. Ahoy there Cape-man! I've posted about the award you gave me :)

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