Laying It On
July 22, 2018, 8:03 am
Filed under: July 2018 | Tags: , , , ,


July 22, 2018

It’s finally time to spread manure and our compost. The farm work is mostly caught up. The weather is a bit unsettled and rain is forecast to be spotty and scattered. I like to spread on the recently mowed pastures and hay fields. The grass responds well. The rains wash the nutrients into the soil. I get much satisfaction from handling this job well.

I don’t spread manure in winter, on soggy, wet ground or anytime that I could make ruts. I want the manure to stay put, not wash off into road ditches and watercourses. First of all, I want the nutrients to enrich my soils. Secondly, I am a good steward for the land, being responsible with this raw material is a passion. Lastly, I want my fields to stay in smooth condition whenever possible. Smooth fields are much better to farm…especially with horse drawn equipment with steel seats!

I will be working on this task everyday for several weeks. I will take 3 or 4 loads out a day, while working on other jobs around the farm. Once the pastures and hay fields have been given a light coating, the field where corn will grow next year will be given a liberal amount. It will then be plowed under in the old way of farming.

Summer is zipping by, this job signifies the halfway point for me. So far, we are on track. I steady rain falls as I write and all the plants seem to be looking skyward enjoying the life-giving moisture. Today we rest, watch the rain and enjoy family….tomorrow…I’ll be laying it on again!

5 Comments so far
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Enjoyed your segments on Rural Heritage and the tour of your buildings. Have you thought about posting blueprints of your buildings?

Comment by Darin Bray

Thank you Darin. I will be sharing more details in upcoming issues in Rural Heritage magazine. The first article will be about my horse barn, tackroom and adjoining feedlot. I will try to post here on my BLOG once I know the publishing date.

Comment by ricelandmeadows

Mr Rice-Do you fall plow your corn ground or do it in the spring before planting the corn? Also ,how deep do you plow?

Comment by roy j mcguffey

I do occasionally fall plow, but usually for oats. I quit planting oats several years ago, but did fall plow for them back in the day.
When plowing for corn, I usually spring plow. I may rethink that now that I will have more horse time, since I retired. The ground is made mellow by the freezing and thawing for sure.
If I fall plow too early, grass and weeds get a jump before I can work the corn ground in spring. I will say though, that I haven’t tried since I switched to my sulky plow with the KV bottom. I bet the weeds and grass would still be covered and I would get the benefit of the loose fall plowed ground.
I hope this helps you, but I fear that I may have created more questions than answers! Ask me anything anytime.

Comment by ricelandmeadows

Thanks for the info. I tried fall plowing one year on one of my fields in order to get head start on spring oats and hay seed. Turned out to be a disaster. I had more gullies than I care to have. I now plant hay seed in August and hope for rain. I’m located in south central Indiana so my weather may be similar to yours? I use a tractor and plow but plowing with horses would be special.

Comment by roy j mcguffey

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