Paul and neighbor Bill Sulltrop puzzle it out. This was just before the harvest at Paul’s place began on July 2, 2011.
It started raining just as I got to the farm Sunday afternoon (July 3) and rained all day. Paul made two passes around the field with the combine yesterday. There is much (50%) grass seed in the grain. I am looking for a seed cleaner (machine) and friend Orley says there is one for sale just down the road from me but the guy is in Kansas… (guess what?)…harvesting wheat. Not sure what the rain will do to us – besides give us a day off.

I spoke to Wendel (the guy who owns the seed cleaner) last night (Jul 3) at length. Another deep repository of agricultural knowledge. Turns out he knows the Allis Chalmers combine and has suggested a fix for the grass seed problem. Small world.

The harvest was meager. Three bushels of rye – less than the amount of seed we planted – and about 60 bushels of wheat. Paul used some of his to plant 13 acres. Once again, it was November before this got in the ground but the ground was better prepared (plowed and disced) so maybe it will do better this time. I sold mine to Charlie Davis, an organic farmer near Paris, MO. He used it for seed along with another 30 bushels we got from the place in Kansas that grew the seed I originally bought last year.

On August 9, 2012 I closed on 5.44 acres of Missouri River bottom land. This land is located on a gravel road (Coats Lane) in Boone County. Close enough to Columbia to make a trip to any of the three farmers markets pretty easy. The soil is all silt. Not a rock anywhere to be found. I might call it Easy Digging Farm but I don’t want to give folks the wrong idea. It hasn’t been all that easy so far.

The first project was to acquire some equipment: I found an old Ferguson on Craigslist and a shady spot for it.


I’ve been down right lucky with my neighbors. There are two guys on the west side. On the northwest, he offered me the use of about 1.5 acres of land that was all in weeds. On the southwest, he had a small tractor which he has let go but also many implements that I can use. So, I’ve disced the north neighbor’s field with the south neighbor’s disc.

The field could not be plowed because it had been left rough by someone who plowed it a few years ago, and my plow has no coulters so the weeds tangle up in it pretty quickly. I was able to plow some of my piece because another kind neighbor was going by on his tractor with a bushhog and cut most of it for me. So I could then get my plow through it.. Here’s a pic of my side: