Irish Blessing

Irish Blessing

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Singin' in the Rain (But Not Dancing)

Milo field, June 26, 2018
"I'm singin' in the rain, just singin' in the rain.
"What a glorious feeling! I'm happy again. ...
"Come on with the rain, I've a smile on my face
"I walk down the lane with a happy refrain
"Just singin', singin' in the rain."

We'll skip the Gene Kelly dance. Dancing is not our forte. (I've been trying to forget my pitiful K-State Singers choreography audition for years, but it keeps playing like a nightmare in my dreams. Thankfully, K-State Concert Choir did not require dancing.)

A-n-y-w-a-y ... we may not be dancing in the rain, but we are singing God's praises with this timely rain,  even though I had hoped to write a wheat harvest summary by now.  However, since we still have 100 acres of wheat to cut, we'll move on to a tour of crops that have loved the 3.40 inches of rain we've had in different installments since June 20. We will try the wheat again later this afternoon.

Ah, the smell of geosmin on a summer day!

(Yeah, I didn't know what to call that unique aroma that wafts from a field after a rain, but a quick question typed into Google says it's ‘geosmin’ - literally “Earth smell.")

There's no better perfume according to a farmer who sees the little green plants visibly perking up after a soaking rain.
The milo was planted May 23, and this past week's rains should make it grow faster than a toddler on a growth spurt.

This photo was taken May 1, when we were planting the corn crop. (Corn planting was April 29 through May 3.)
On June 26, it's almost chest height on Randy. This year's variety is a little shorter to begin with, but it was also stressed with heat and lack of moisture as it started to grow. You can see the stress on the leaves.
However, the 3.40 inches of rain we've gotten in the past week has come at an opportune time for the crop, since the corn is pollinating.
 It's also forming ears.
The rain was "super beneficial and came at an opportune time. However, we'll need more rain in a few weeks for good yields"... a direct quote from my farmer.

I know this doesn't look much different than the milo field. But it's a silage field. It, too, likes the rainfall. Since our alfalfa has been impacted with drought conditions so far, we hope to have plenty of silage to put in the trench silo this fall to give our cows and calves plenty to eat this coming winter.


The rain has delayed the planting of sudan. Later this summer (if all goes as planned), we'll swath and bale sudan, also for cattle feed.

 Our rain Tuesday morning was somewhat unexpected, and Randy had already put some of the sudan seed in the drill.
I'd never noticed this handy-dandy chart for grain in pounds per acre inside the drill.
It will be ready to go when the fields dry out just a bit - maybe even today!
It's not "Singin' in the Rain" that I've been humming since last night. Instead, I've had a revolving medley of "Luck Be A Lady" and "Bushel and a Peck" after going to Music Theatre of Wichita and seeing "Guys and Dolls" last night. A friend sent us complimentary tickets we could use for any show this summer, and rain earlier in the week kept us out of the field on my birthday. Surprise! We had to go to the ticket office to exchange them in person for the real thing, and we were lucky enough that tickets were available. As always, the sets, the choreography and the performers were top-notch. It was the perfect birthday gift. Thanks, Sheila!


  1. WONDERFUL to hear you got a nice amount of rain!! Such a beautiful thing! I remember seeing milo fields when we took Jenna to Hesston last August...such pretty grain heads. I'm also curious...that grain drill looks suspiciously like an "Esch" grain drill, like ones that are manufactured around here. I'm guessing it's probably not...all the way out in Kansas, but you never know! When Jim seeds small grains, he studies that handy dandy chart thoroughly.

    1. It's a John Deere drill. Yes, we were glad to get the rain. And we finally finished up wheat harvest today (6-29) after a week layoff due to rain. Still, we are thankful for the rain for our other crops.