Good grief...what a year. Yesterday I went to the field where I still have swaths laying. It is a difficult property that I just picked up this year. Parts of it here and there were tilled, other areas were wild grass and the remaining acreage was alfalfa hay. I did my best to break it this spring, but in hindsight I should have just summerfallowed it for the year or grown a cover crop. As it turned out the areas that were tilled by the owner for his market garden did quite well (aside from the monstrous crop of thistle). The wild areas and the alfalfa areas simply grew up in wild grass and alfalfa despite the spring tillage and seeding of wheat. With the drought, the already established grasses and alfalfa did well and the seeded wheat could not compete for moisture.
I was left with a few decisions to make. Firstly with the shortage of hay in the area it made sense to simply bale up the alfalfa/wheat for feed bales and secondly, the areas that had a half decent crop of wheat could be combined. Then came the October rains, or shall I say drizzle, heavy dews...whatever. Weeks on end of wet soggy, moisture laden clouds hovering over the field. When the sun finally came out a week ago it was too cold to effectively dry anything.
I thought I was pressing my luck with the good weather lately and just decided to combine anyways, dry or otherwise. As long as the swaths would go through the combine I was ok. It wouldn't be enough grain to worry about heating in the bins as I would just bag it in large totes and grind it for feed. So, away I went with the old C2 combine for one last working day of the season (for it at least anyways). Things went well and a couple hours later I had about 80 bushels of damp wheat in the hopper. Everything worked well with the combine.
Now all I have left to accomplish is to bale up the remaining 15 acres of feed. I raked it yesterday, November 15th and now I can bale it up tonight or tomorrow....or both depending how long it takes with my crappy old baler. Wish me luck.