Sunday, May 24, 2009
The ground is so hard
I have been scouting since we got home and the ground is so hard.
It was as nice as I can ever remember March 15 when we started planting the garden but that soon changed.
Since then the rain and cold night air has turned it into concrete. Only the weeds are flourishing and they even aren't doing that well.
Usally this happens in April and I can plant. It happened in March this year though and the calendar told me it was too early. The garden showed it, too, the sweet corn didn't make it.
I would really like to know more about the science of how ground turns off hard like that. We have our calcium up but the clay particles still shrank and stuck together like glue. Everyone's ground is about the same, I don't see a whole lot of difference. I need to go look at some ground that has had gypsum over the years and see how it compares. That is the softest soil I have ever seen.
This has made farmers spend a lot more money on fuel trying to loosen the ground back up to plant. Cover crops helped but there are not that many of them around here yet. We are trying to change that because it makes sense and cents.
I don't like planting into hard ground but there isn't much choice now. They make equipment heavier and wider and that doesn't help the problem.
The certified seed wheat fields are as hard as the ground that doesn't have it. You would think it would be softer with the roots growing in it.
I am betting we don't break any yield records this year. This will just be a year to get by. I do hope we make a profit. The season is young yet so we have time but this wasn't the ideal way to start.
That's the way it is on the farm on Sunday May 24, 2009.