Saturday, June 14, 2014

Planting 2014

As usual, I've been hanging on to this post...but it's been a crazy couple of weeks! Finishing up grad school and getting ready to move to Nebraska has been one heck of an adventure. And it's not over yet! But this post is from planting almost a month ago...

Life with a farmer's son and an ag mechanic is never a dull one. 

I've stacked hay, driven through more equipment lots than one person should ever have to-preview of the rest of my life :), kept the boy company while he worked on one thing or another, helped haul grain to the elevator, and most recently, got to witness the first run with the new planter. 

Now I will be the first person to tell you that I have ZERO mechanical skills. If you don't believe me, ask the boy about me trying to locate the transmission on the truck. I can manage to follow most mechanical conversations and even have some intelligent input every now and then, but that is where my interest and abilities end. 

But getting to see the new planter in action was pretty darn cool. It's easy to imagine how large farm equipment is, it's another thing to stand beside it. 

Can you see the boy standing by the back tire? He's about 6'5" if that tells you anything about the size of this equipment. 

When I look at this new planter, I see a whole bunch of parts that have to work together to get seed into the ground. I won't even try to explain how the thing works because I would only end up confusing myself and you as well!

 All you really need to know is the seed is held to these little holes by vacuum, ends up in the ground and is covered up so it is protected from the elements. 

The left one is for corn, the right one is for soybeans. 
 There are many choices when it comes to seeds for planting. The boy's family strongly believes in Dekalb corn, but everybody swears by different brands.  

The top bag is corn that was planted last year, the bottom bag is the corn choice for this year. 
 When you pictured corn being planted I bet you didn't think it would be so colorful, right? Explaining that will be another post some day, but for right now, let's just enjoy the rainbow :)

The best part about being witness to using the new planter and GPS? The number of times I had to drive out to pick the boy up to run back to the shop for parts. Apparently working all the kinks out is not an easy job! The second best part? Being able to watch the transfer of knowledge from young to old. Usually you expect the old to share their knowledge with the young, but in this case, youth is the winner. Why? Because it turns out using the GPS and a fancy planter takes a lot of getting used to...and for once the boy's knowledge beat the old man's knowledge. I guess working at an equipment dealership definitely has its perks! 

 At the end of the day, I mostly sat around watching the guys work while I took a nap/tanned on the 4-wheeler. But I wouldn't have traded it for anything. Who doesn't love spending time outside? Especially when it's being spent watching the next year's crop get put in?

I easily could have spent the day being more productive elsewhere because the farmer and the farmer's son did not need me. At all. In fact, I'm sure I was a hindrance. But spending the day with my farmer and seeing the joy that farming brings him was worth every second. 


  1. Awesome new planter! Have you guys had any guidance problems? This looks like so much fun. We are so old school but we love seeing all the new technology that comes out. I worked at a Deere dealer in the service department for a few years so I am somewhat familiar with this planter but I am like you......... I can only get so far but than I am limited. But hey, at least we try, right? :)

    1. No, we haven't had any guidance problems, the whole transition has gone pretty smoothly! And sometimes I'm not sure whether it would be better to not try at all or to try and then when I sound like an idiot, at least I can give the guys some amusement?? I try and stick to the animals with only brief forays into crops because I definitely don't have the expertise...thank heavens for the boy! :)