Are You Ready For Harvest? 


We are headed right into one of the busiest times of the year. You have worked hard all season long to keep your plants healthy for this moment. It is the final bow for most of your crops (alfalfa and other perennials aside) and it is easy to draw the curtain closed on the 2019 season. However, we challenge you to think of harvest and post-harvest as the encore. This involves plenty of decisions, prepping, and planning to ensure a successful 2020 season.
We have compiled a list of these tasks to be keeping in mind throughout the next few months:
You have worked on and fixed your combine over the winter and maybe a little in the summer to ensure everything is in working order, but have you worked with your monitors? Nearly every combine has a monitor that tracks yield. Ensuring that you are collecting accurate data while harvesting requires good set up and calibration. 
Like with all technology, just because it was working when you installed it, or when you combined last year doesn’t mean that it will be working correctly this year. It is important to make sure monitors are set up for harvest and are calibrated correctly. Our Technology Services team can help with this!

Plan Your Harvest Schedule

After many years of farming, it is easy to get in the habit of harvesting your fields in a particular order. A common way of harvesting is “first one in, first one out”, meaning you start with the first field you planted. While this logic is fairly sound, there are some instances where you may need to switch things up a bit.

Harvest is typically determined by moisture, but moisture can greatly differ from field to field due to how well the plants were able to stand up to stress. Biological and environmental stresses can have a major impact on the maturing and standability of your crop. It is important to scout your fields close to harvest and determine the moisture and strength of your plants. Plants that are weaker and were afflicted by disease and insect pressure most likely will need to be harvested first.

Fall Fertilizer Planning

The perfect time to plan your fall fertilizer application is BEFORE the crops come off. This allows adequate time for you to meet with your local Centra Sota Crop Advisor and determine exactly what you need to apply after the crops come off. This can be accomplished by looking at soil sampling results and having your Crop Advisor help develop a plan based on your goals. If you do not have soil sample, that’s okay! Soil sampling can be done after the crop comes off.

Fall Tillage

Once your crop is off, you can begin prepping the ground for winter/spring. There are many different options for fall tillage, especially depending on your fertilizer plan. Discuss your tillage plans while fertilizer planning with your Crop Advisor. Together you can determine the best way to incorporate fertilizer.

Evaluating Weed Control

Weed pressure and challenges change from year to year. Now is a great time to determine how well your weed management program met your goals. Keeping track of the weed pressure, weed type, and the herbicide control you used can lead to successful management in the future. This will allow you to monitor how effective your management is from year to year, and will ensure you are properly rotating modes of action, necessary to combat herbicide resistance.

Secure Financing and Loans

Fall is the time of year for loans and financing through our Ag Quest financial services. Whether you are looking to insure buildings and equipment or are looking to expand your operation, our Ag Quest team is here to help. Visit our Finance and Insurance Page on our website to learn more!

Contact your local Centra Sota Crop Advisor with any questions, or to help with your Harvest Check List!

Contact Your Crop Advisor

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