Monday, September 19, 2011

Farm Science Review

I got a sneak peek at Farm Science Review Saturday. Sales people will be there today with all their literature and final sales props for the deluge of farmers and students Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

I tried to look at planters, sprayers and harvesters, our main compenents in our farm machinery lineup. There really isn't much new in that lineup but more bells and whistles on the same principles farmers have used for 40 years.

The planter row unit is really no different. It was interesting to see the new White 36 row planter available on rubber tracks instead of wheels and even a pull behind sprayer that had them.

They all did have their own version of row cleaners, trash whippers or residue managers, whatever you want to call them. The White looked closer to the Martin setup but only the IH had the long row unit with the big dimpled gauge wheel tire, just like in the past.

The majors have addressed issues of seed delivery from a bulk hopper into a little seedbox and GPS add ons more than they have trying to change the row unit for minimum or notill planting.

Strip till bars were everywhere, I don't know why, we haven't adapted them in Ohio like they have in the states west and north of us. I saw more lime and fertilizer spreaders to address nutrient and soil amendment application than I did strip till bars though. Maybe that is because they can be wheeled to the show easier but I think it is because of farmer demand in Ohio.

Narrower rows abounded as Ohio has been a leader in narrow rows and notill due to our research programs here. Still, 30 inch corn rows, 15 inch beans rows and 7.5 inch drill rows dominate our market. I haven't seen the need to switch from those setups.

AGCO had the best combine display with the new Super 6 sitting on a pile of sloped mulch shelling corn. That depicts all the corn planted on our rolling hills and the slight minority of flat black ground we have with the price of corn and its demand for every acre.

The new S series Deere combine was there but I didn't take time to look close because I know we can't afford one. A big difference is the the Deere 9770 STS we are using is 6000 lbs heavier than the Gleaner R-75 and that looks to be a concern on every acre this fall. The weather forecast has been changed to rainy and cloudy all week and soils don't dry out that much in the fall.

The grass is green again so I have been mowing grass as the late beans use up the added rainfall. Kernal depth is good in the late planted corn.

There is a little corn ready to shell in the FSR region but I expect record crowds with farmer optimism, a little extra cash and most crops not near ready for harvest.

Salesmen, man your stations!

Ed Winkle

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