Post by Farmer John
Our farmer friends George and Julie are moving. It is a sad occasion because their encouragement and example of how small farms work in our area was vital to me taking the big step to full time farming. George is ready for retirement so they bought a few acres in Missouri along a nice clear steam so he can slow down. They are in the process of liquidating some farm machinery and crops. He called me up and asked if I wanted some non-GMO open pollinated ear corn for my livestock. I said sure.
George grows a few acres of corn every year to fatten a few hogs and feed his chickens. He has the equipment to plant, cultivate, and pick his few acres from the seat of a tractor. It is a pretty slick operation. This picture below shows us unloading corn from the gravity wagon onto the elevator and into the back of the truck. All of this equipment is older than I am but still works well.
Once the corn is loaded into the back of the truck we can slowly drive it back to the farm. A truckload equals about a ton. To measure the corn weight we made a couple of trips to the gravel yard truck scales.
There is an old corn crib in the upper building at the farm. Corn cribs have slatted sides and are the perfect dimension for drying ear corn. At one time, there were several other corn cribs around the place but they have rotted back into the ground over the years. This corn crib is still several sizes larger than I need. I don't have an elevator like George so I have to unload the corn by the shovel full.
Here is Mollie in the crib with all of our organic corn. We have to wait about a month until all the corn is dry before using. My neighbor has an old hand crank sheller we can borrow to shell the corn. Once it is shelled I can take it to town to be ground into chicken and pig feed. I am excited to feed my animals local organic corn and will save some seed from this batch to plant an acre or two of corn next year.