Last week I heard someone talking about ‘flash drought’. I didn’t think much about it until I was checking pivots on Monday. The picture is real, the picture is from today. The last time the ditch looked like this was 2012! In 2012, the drought broke around the first of August.
I got my laugh this morning as I decided to look up the drought monitor. It showed there was less drought now than there was three months ago. Hmmm, if I ever have time, I’ll have to check into how they come up with some of this stuff. I’m pretty sure most everyone was sitting with their planters in the shed three months ago wondering if it would ever stop raining.
Missing the rains
If you haven’t guessed, we missed most of the rain last week. We had a couple of half-tenth events. There were some isolated areas that received significant rain, but none of our farms in a 20-mile radius was one of them. Remarkably, the crops are taking it well due to the milder temperatures.
We are just entering pollination of the June-planted corn. I can’t stress enough how much a two-inch rain would mean to this crop! With rain not forecasted for a week, it will be a waiting game to see what damage is done. We continue to mitigate damage with irrigation, but nothing, nothing can replace natural rainfall.
Dad and I spent several hours out in a cornfield this week troubleshooting an irrigation system. This time of year it becomes more difficult as it is a two-man job. You can’t see what is happening at the other end of the system. Engaging the override button can, as the sticker says ‘cause structural damage’.
One person is required to operate the controls while the other troubleshoots. This was in a field with no irrigation lane, so we were walking in and out each time we tried something new. I even lost my electric meter on the next to last trip in.
After changing several electrical parts and scratching our head for quite a while, we finally found a burned out cord end on the pump control circuit, a simple $2 part.
All is well, water is running again.