Life On My Tiny Farm

1946 - JD model FBB wheat drill

1946 – JD model FBB wheat drill

Don’t make fun of my winter rebuild project, JD Model FBB grain drill!

I’ve been away from the computer most of the time for the past few days. Son-n-law, Ronny and I have been working on a ‘well used’ 1946 John Deere model FBB wheat drill. It had been setting in the corner of a field that was planted in grass over 15 years ago. Someone had left wheat seed in the planter seed box, the seed got wet and rusted out most of the bottom of the seed box. We cut out all the rusted parts, fitted and installed a new bottom to this seed box. Greased/oiled and using a lot of WD40 have managed to get the rest of the planter parts working again.

I still have to reattach the new tongue that I built, (old tongue) was bent out of shape so bad it was unfixable. (Unfixable? Is that a real word?)
Give it a good John Deere green paint job, Mount new tires and it will be ready for a test run. If everything works as planned, we will use it to plant a about 6 or 7 acres of milo (sorghum(maize)) about the second week or so of April or when soil temperature reaches 60 degrees at the 3 inches deep that can be as late as the first week of May on this tiny farm. Then this coming fall around the end of September, we will drill in about 12 acres of winter wheat so the cows will have green grazing most of the winter and into spring 2014.

Just as an information thing, we are using a no till process. We get fewer seeds to germinate per acre but it is much less damaging to our established pasture grass.

Long horn calf's, Trouble and Tuesday

Long horn calf’s, Trouble and Tuesday

We have a new member in our long horn cow herd. A new bull calf, born on the 28th of January weighing about 70 pounds. The other steer calf is now 5 months old and has grown from about 70 pounds to around 275+ pounds. In about 2 or maybe 3 weeks we will band this new red bull calf and make him a steer. We have no use for another bull and a steer will gain more weigh on the same amount of feed as a bull. Both of these calf’s, black steer and red steer will be 1,100 to 1,200 pounds at about 30 months of age and be ready to go to the butcher for processing. Long horns produce a very lean meat so you don’t loose as much weight at processing time in trimmed off fat.
Tuesday calf, bedded down under 5 month old steer called Trouble

Tuesday 5 day old calf, bedded down under 5 month old steer called Trouble

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4 responses to “Life On My Tiny Farm

  1. I’ve been reading about no-till farming methods in Progressive Farmer. Do you grass feed or grain finish your steers? Most farmrs around here, who raise their own grain finish them, which they say increases the marbling. That sounds like extra fat to me. There is own local farm, which grass feeds their steers for an extra year before butchering. There beef is quite lean. Enjoy your rebuild project.
    Oscar

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    • Re: hermitsdoor – Grin .. you ask hard questions to give short answer’s to, so, manipulation of marbling through diet is not an easy thing to do.
      Some marbling is desirable to produce a tender, juicy, tasty cut of meat. However marbling is more closely related to a combination of age, diet. and beef breed.
      Marbling contributes very little to the total weight of a cow.
      Longhorns are naturally a lean breed producing little to no marbling until they are about 36 months of age even then marbling is limited. High grain diets produce mostly fat that is normally trimmed off before packaging. {This fat is good for the seller, bad for the buyer.}
      Keep in mind, beef producers are paid for the ‘live’ weight of their cows whether they be lean or fat is of little importance in the auction ring. Cows are sold by their live weight, currently that’s about $1.25 to $1.45 a pound.

      I keep my cows on pasture and supplement feed only enough to keep them healthy.
      Grin, now wipe that BBQ sauce off your chin! Happy gardening

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  2. That’s very interesting about the no plough method. Good for you! (Good for the land.)

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