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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Wet Harvest

This year's harvest would be memorable even if we had not harvested the largest crop ever. Wet weather and later than usual planting dates drove the harvest into late November and for some into December. I saw a rather large field of beans being harvested today.

The photos below are very representative of how many of our late harvested fields look.  Wet weather plays a role, but maybe too much deep tillage as well.   Deep tilling every year every year creates a nive rooting medium, but is can also create a loose base.

If you have deep ruts as below, how do you fix them.  I have seen some have success by tilling parallel to the ruts to close them up a bit and then going at an angle to level them off.  Certainly you should wait for drier or frozen conditions before trying anything, but water in the ruts will be slow to go away.

In the end, I don't think you can till deep enough to remove this kind of compaction.  Deep rooted cover crops may be needed to correct the compaction in the long term.   

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