This was my first year where I did every step involved in organic production on a group of fields, from primary tillage, planting and cultivation, all the way through harvest. In addition I did this with a lot of new (to me) equipment. I'm happy with the outcome and calling it a success.
The last field was the one I had the most reservations about, primarily because, despite all the work I did cultivating, it had a lot of weeds *in* the rows. Because of that I wasn't sure how the harvest would turn out. After it was over all I can say is - The combine is an amazing machine. Literally finding needles (soybeans) in a haystack (weeds, soybean stems and stubble).
Before - lots of 6' tall foxtail (video here):
After - lots of chopped up residue:
Here's the video that the above screenshot is from:
After combining the last field I put the bean header on the cart and drove the 18 foot wide combine home in snow flurries, about 12 miles on the 2 lane state highway. I parked the combine in the new machine shed until I can give it a thorough cleaning with the leaf blower and vacuum. Mice love soybean dust and residue, which as you can imagine, gets everywhere. They also chew up control wires inside the combine which are expensive and time consuming to repair.
Check out this fascinating bit of history - How they farmed grain in the pre-modern world
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