Lefebure.com / Farming / 2007 in Europe

The "red monster" is back in our fields. That’s like Christmas, New Years day and a Birthday together after that long time. And sunflowers stand on the list just before the rain arrives. Hope we can get them done. It's foggy in the morning now, so we can start around 12 midday and can cut till 8 PM before it gets foggy again. Not that large window we need, but I think we'll get them done in 2 days.

Seeding winter barley is on the list. We grow a lot more of this crop this year because of yet fixed contracts to hog farmers in Carinthia. We have enough moisture in the ground. Barley should be up in less than 10 days. Spiders cover the acres with their nets right behind the air-seeder. And again, beautiful sunsets!!!

A beautiful day shows us endless skies today. We received some moisture and everything starts to grow immediately. It's an excellent view to see that strong green in the yellow orange evening light. Winter rape (aka: canola) is getting up and the mustard is now about 2 inches tall. We also have big problems with mice this year. They are "harvesting" a lot of mustard at the moment in the night. And the beetles are back too.

We started on corn today because the local corn processing plant ran out of it. It is still very green, moisture up to 43%, and yields down to.........! But everyone expected that because the lack of rain during summer.

The "Red Devil" called SUSU is doing a great job even at this high moisture without broken kernels. So we have a lot of acres to cut at the moment, to get in more than 250 metric tons on one day. The Geringhoff head is also doing an excellent job in green stalks. The chopper is doing a better job than normal.

As you can see I changed the color!!! No, just a joke! Our 8010 had so much work in another area that I got help from a custom cutter from Styria, Franz Trummer, to get in my crops. Both combines did a good job, but had problems keeping up to the capacity we’re used to from the 8010. Yields are around 60 to 70 bu/ac, which is about 40% less than in a normal year. Test weight is perfect, and the prices are going up. I stored every kernel in the bins and "wait and see"!


Started the barley harvest on June 20th, about 3 weeks earlier than the years before. Bad yields, about 35% less than last year, but high quality!

We’re still wondering about the sugar beets, they are coming up without rain between rock hard clots of soil.

In the first picture, you can see that some of our fields are suffering from the Barley Yellow Dwarf Virus, so we don’t expect a good yield anymore. This second picture is of a field of sunflowers that didn’t come up properly. The third picture shows the rye which is also suffering from the drought.


These pics show our sprayer working in rye on the part of the farm with the hills, in the north of Vienna. Still not enough moisture, which is why the rye does not look good.

Here is a view of the "desert" that we want to grow sugar beets in.

Fertilizing (Nitrogen and PK) on all fields including the winter wheat and barley. We still hope that it rains in the near future to make all the fertilizer available to the plants. We use a spreader that has a scale in it. It weights every 25 kg the fertilizer back and compares the weight then with the spreading computer. So it is possible to use cheap, low quality fertilizer without problems. It is independent on the speed you‘re driving - it will do a good job up to 15mph. Notice the trailer that can be lifted up with some extra hydraulic cylinders to fill the spreader without an auger.

Seeding Durum with our airseeder, pretty much the same that Flexi-coil produces in America. We do make tracks in the fields to make it easier to find the right distance in spraying‚ because we do not use any parallel tracking (GPS) system.

Started chiselplowing today with our new construction: welded a long draw bar on the roller and attached it to the chisel plow. Works great, especially in dry conditions. We have to roll the ground immediately after chiselplowing to prevent it from drying out. Still no rain in the forecast, even for the next few weeks.

We've been spraying burndown on all the green fields to prepare for spring durum, peas, sunflowers, and beets. We got a new sprayer from Amazone with a 72 foot boom and 1200 gallon tank. It can be pulled by any tractor over 115 HP with a 540 RPM PTO. We’re very satisfied with it so far.

This winter is one of the warmest we’ve ever had. There were only a few days below zero, and there was even less moisture than the years before. Theese pics show some impressions of this part of the year, do not wonder about the green mustard, it just shows how warm it was.

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