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Sunflowers and harvesting


bitty

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On 6/26/2023 at 9:09 PM, acem said:

Mine are about to bloom.

 

IMG_20230626_205627.jpg

Ace, just to give you an idea of how different our growing seasons are, here is a picture I took last night of some of the sunflowers in our area that are probably a foot tall or so. Have seen them planted on the 4th of July around here and they made it....you just better hope you have a late frost so they can fully develop/mature. Ours usually are full bloom during Sturgis bike rally week....about the second week in August. 

20230702_203158.jpg

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I picked up a flatbed trailer, Friday morning. Field about 25 miles southwest of me is nearly full bloom. Pretty early for this area but it’s sure pretty cool to watch them “face” the sun. 

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Mine are planted early to be ready for 'harvest' in mid August. I'm convinced that for agricultural purposes they would be much better off planted a few weeks later. 

I got a terrible stand but it doesn't matter so long as they are huntable.

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Compared to corn, soybeans, and most other crops, sunflowers generally do not have a uniform emergence. If you look at my picture above, you can see it is far from an even emergence.

 

Sunflowers are generally what I call a "default crop" or "crop of last resort" around here as they are about the latest crop you can plant...along with millet. If we have a late frost that kills the wheat or corn, or a very dry spring that burns up the wheat, you can come back with sunflowers or millet to try to salvage a crop year. Sunflowers are relatively cheap crop to plant, and can grow on very little moisture. I refer to them as a cactus in that respect. They can grow a tap root that can go down 4-6' to find moisture if they have to. 

When they are about the size of yours, they will start aerial application of insecticide for head weevils here. With sunflowers you deal with bugs of some sort from the time you put the seed in the planter until you deliver the crop to the grain elevator or birdseed plant. 

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On 3/13/2022 at 10:37 AM, Takn4aFool said:

video of that system

 

This world need to be driven by my 10 yoa grandson. I probably couldn't get it started?

Interesting video but full of to many 8 cylinder words.

I would guess this is the future?

 

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I think the sunflower is close to ready for harvest. I was at a meeting today about planting Milo (or sorghum) . Not sure if they will work in our area but kinda like to try some instead of a small grain . Now I want to find 3 Milo drums for our 955 12/23 ... 

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My sunflowers were harvested with shotguns (dove hunting). Not a big money maker but it helps pay the bills!

I'm really surprised There are a lot of sunflower seeds left.  They were mature before labor day. If there are any left after I'm done with harvesting everything else I'll see how it goes.

All this talk about combine fires has me nervous...

Milo i

 

@bittymilo is easy to grow but can be hard to dry down in humid climates. Have a dryer ready. It can mold in the head or in a bin in the wrong conditions. Be sure you have a market. Watch for sugar cane aphids. It unlikely you will get them but they are devastating.x

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1 hour ago, bitty said:

I think the sunflower is close to ready for harvest. I was at a meeting today about planting Milo (or sorghum) . Not sure if they will work in our area but kinda like to try some instead of a small grain . Now I want to find 3 Milo drums for our 955 12/23 ... 

Everyone tells me that Milo dust makes you itch like no other. I don’t mind it unless it’s moldy, then it’s dangerous! For a trial, I would drill it. I can probably find you some drums if you’re serious. Lots and I mean lots of Milo grown around us. 
I have seen it mold in heads, and I have seen it cut after the first of the year because it wouldn’t dry down.  Milo stalks make excellent grazing for beef cow, but you can get Prussic acid in the stalks and kill a bunch of cows in a hurry too. 
I have seen Milo out yield corn and dollar per acre blow corn out of the ground!!

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33 minutes ago, acem said:

Milo is much cheaper to grow than corn and is drought tolerant.

Herbicide options are different. No gmo (roundup, BT, etc). 

The cheaper input side compared to the grain is the draw. Was a market through a guy at the meeting. There is some herbicide resistance in a few varieties 

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6 minutes ago, bitty said:

The cheaper input side compared to the grain is the draw. Was a market through a guy at the meeting. There is some herbicide resistance in a few varieties 

I have only seen milo out yield corn in total bushels or return on investment on marginal ground. On ground that will support 200+ bu/ac corn Milo can’t even come close for us. I have picked 250 bushel corn and the best milo I ever cut made 130. I know there are stories of much higher yields, but I never got them. It has a place, but it’s not on productive land around here. If a guy wants to save input money on productive land, put it in soybeans. There is some market out there for milo as feed because it is all non gmo. If milo made 200 it would be a no brainer to quit raising corn. 

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6 hours ago, Dirt_Floor_Poor said:

I have only seen milo out yield corn in total bushels or return on investment on marginal ground. On ground that will support 200+ bu/ac corn Milo can’t even come close for us. I have picked 250 bushel corn and the best milo I ever cut made 130. I know there are stories of much higher yields, but I never got them. It has a place, but it’s not on productive land around here. If a guy wants to save input money on productive land, put it in soybeans. There is some market out there for milo as feed because it is all non gmo. If milo made 200 it would be a no brainer to quit raising corn. 

We are in a county with a 130 bushel average or around it . If we raise some it would only displace oats , wheat or rye . I can't run 100% corn because of erosion, everything is narrow strips . 

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3 hours ago, bitty said:

We are in a county with a 130 bushel average or around it . If we raise some it would only displace oats , wheat or rye . I can't run 100% corn because of erosion, everything is narrow strips . 

I would bet that Milo would yield really close and inputs aren’t much, but where are you going to market it? It has to be cracked to feed. Only has about 60% feed value as corn. 

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