Saturday, July 12, 2008

Combining wheat, and STRAW 101

Most combining happens in the fall when the corn and soybeans are ready to be harvested. But wheat and rye are typically ready mid-summer. At this point in life, my dad has someone else do most of the crop farming on his place, and they don't have any wheat out. But the neighbor (about 1/4 mile up the road) had some and is combining it this week. We went to check out the action.

This is ripe wheat.

This is the front of a combine. It has different "heads" that are exchanged on the front of it depending on the crop being harvested. This rotating head is for the wheat and rakes it up into the combine as it is being cut off. This is the back where the stem and chaff of the plant comes out after the wheat grains have been removed, and if you look closely, you can see the wheat piled in the hopper on top.

Then the hopper is unloaded into a truck or wagon and hauled off to an elevator.Little G is still trying to wrap his mind around how a grain elevator works. May have to arrange for a field trip!

STRAW - Straw is what is left after the wheat has been removed - that row on the ground behind the combine. (HAY is usually some combination of grass and/or alfalfa, that is full of roughage and nutrients for animals.) Straw is usually just used for bedding whereas alfalfa is used for feed.

1 comment:

  1. Oh man, we'd sure love to have that! It's getting expensive to buy for the horse.... LOL!