The Other Side of Sunset

The Other Side of Sunset

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Farm Fresh Fragrance

The sun has risen on the 2016 alfalfa season.
 Looking west at first light - the other side of sunrise
Hay season has been a long time coming this year. Spring rains kept the swather out of the field in May. But the generous rainfall has produced thick windrows as the guys have swathed hay this week.
The fragrance of the purple blooms mixes with the perfume of the freshly cut alfalfa. It could be bottled under the name, "Farm Fresh." (It sure beats the aroma of diesel wafting off Randy's clothes after a repair job.)

Yellow and white butterflies play "tag" among the flowers, dancing too quickly for a photo on a warm June afternoon.
 
Randy called with a photo request after swathing a field Wednesday morning. He thought it was ready for a prairie portrait.
I think he was right.

For more information about our alfalfa crop - from swathing to raking to baling - click on this Kim's County Line link

9 comments:

  1. Boy farm work is a huge job---hard but fulfilling work.
    Bob has only 20 acres here. He used to raise a few head of cows here but when he late wife became ill he sold them to csare for her. So we have had the horses here but there is just too much grass and a fat horse is not a healthy horse. He just lets the grass grow and it could be hayed for cattle hay but it is not viable for trucks and such to get in there. Part of his property--a little part is woods and then 2 houses in the front. So every year he mows the pastures and what a job that is for his old 53 Ferguson---Fergie is a hard worker. He actually just brush hogs it and then sometimes makes trails for me and the dog to traipse around in.
    Liked your stories about things to do in Kansas. It is so true that our own states have so much to offer---why ever leave. Very interesting about the German POW camp.
    Alfalfa looks real good.
    MB

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    1. I always like hearing more about your part of the world. Thanks for sharing. Yes, the alfalfa is really good, which is amazing when it looked so sparse before we got the rains in May.

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  2. He was right, it's beautiful! And there's nothing quite like the smell of freshly mowed hay! ( just don't let it touch my skin once it's dry...I've been itching already this spring/summer!)

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    1. I can't believe it didn't rain on it at all this time. And we got it done before wheat harvest starts this week.

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  3. It's me again...I just went back and read the link you have in your post about how you guys bale hay. I just love hearing how different farmers in different areas bale their hay. We prefer small, dry bales for feeding, but in the past few years, round baling has become more popular here. We bale it with high moisture, and wrap it in plastic. Then it ferments and the cows love it! It's a pain in the neck to feed, because we have to tear it apart and feed it by hand in our small operation, but it's a great way to beat the rain clouds if the forecast is bad. Thanks for sharing how you guys do it! Our Amish neighbors buy loads of dry, western hay. I wonder if some of it comes from your area?

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    1. When Randy was a kid/teen, they did more small bales, but there aren't many people around here who do it that way any more. I guess it's too labor intensive. There are a few who bale it that way. We always buy a few bales from them as "bait hay" - hay to get the cattle to follow the pickup, etc.

      We feed silage during the winter, which would be similar to the fermented hay, I suppose. It's chopped and put in a trench silo, where it ferments. The big difference would be that we don't have to tear it apart; it's already in chopped form.

      You're right: It's always interesting to see the differences from region to region.

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  4. Under the blue skies, with the rich green and the wafting smell of fresh hay, it must be a rewarding day's work.

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    1. The day often starts early and/or finishes late with putting up hay, but it's good to have the first cutting out of the way now.

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