Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Making a Bundle

Photo taken on August 21, 2015
Silage is a crop that's head and shoulders above the rest - literally! It's been 3 months since it was planted and now it towers over my human yardstick. (Contrast that with the life cycle of wheat, which takes 9 months from planting to harvest!)
Randy planted the 2015 silage crop on June 6. By June 15, it was up and out of the ground.
Photo from 2013 silage harvest
Most of the crop will be harvested this fall and put in a trench silo.

We'll use it to feed cows and feeder calves this winter.

But we're making a bundle with a little of it. Well, we're not actually making a bundle - whether you're talking monetarily or literally. But a hunter is!
For the past few years, a hunter has asked to harvest some of the silage to use as camouflage for his hunting blinds.

He prefers to harvest it before the grain appears at the top of the head. I guess Kansas Wildlife and Parks frowns upon using the grain heads to attract birds, saying it gives the hunters an unfair advantage.

Once in awhile, he's missed the window to harvest the silage before the head appears. Then he has to cut the heads off using a chain saw. That's a lot more labor intensive than just cutting the silage earlier.
Once he has the bundles as big as he wants, twine is used to tie them together.
We didn't get out to the field in time to see the cutter in action. But we saw the end result. He has already hauled them off to let them dry down before the migratory bird hunting season starts.

It's a win-win for us and them. We'll get a few extra dollars for the silage - a different kind of "double-crop" than we're used to. And the hunters will have cover for their blinds. 


  1. That looks kind of like the binder that our Amish neighbors use to harvest their corn for silage! I'm amazed too, at how tall the corn is this year. Ours is way taller than usual, and the ears are higher than my head. I hope we don't get a tropical storm coming through that blows it down before it's dry enough to shell out what wasn't chopped for silage!

    1. Our silage did much better than our corn. We just finished cutting corn yesterday, so I'll do a wrap-up blog on it soon. We have had lots of wind this week. I did notice that some of the edges of the field were knocked around because of it. But no tropical storms for us, here in the middle of the U.S. I hope you avoid that, too!