Producer Page: Fall

Welcome Wagon--- Peoples State Bank is very happy to be joined by our friends and neighbors from Paragon Bank.  We have enjoyed beginning to work with you and our institution has benefitted greatly from the addition of several outstanding new employees.  We look forward to a great future!!

Soggy September--- This is getting old!  Too much rain recently will start to impact our harvest season.  You may want to think about a plan “B” type of approach to fall work.  For example:  what fields are a priority, instead of always having the same combining order ---Be flexible regarding the switch back and forth between corn and soybeans, it is a pain but may be necessary with the limiting conditions  ---Have your grain handling set up so you can harvest in limited windows and not have bottlenecks that stop the combine when the weather is ok, maybe be willing to use some older bins for temporary storage etc.

Tillage Troubles--- Hopefully the weather straightens out and we don’t have to worry about this but……trying to work wet soils with deep tillage is not usually a good decision.  Be willing to be either patient or adaptable to change on a field by field basis so you don’t create compaction or tear up equipment.

Insurance Insight--- Remember that if you are going to co-mingle new crop with old crop inventory in your grain bins, you need to get that measured first.  Be in contact with your crop insurance agent so that there are no questions about production reporting for 2016.

Test Takers--- We are all watching our budgets very closely these days.  One place to start is with fall fertilizer applications.  It is critical in these tight margin times, that you get a good set of soil tests and make a good decision regarding the application of nutrients.  Use the U of MN or Iowa State recommendations and base them on realistic yield goals.  If you need fertility improvements in areas, by all means it is important to address those shortfalls, but for many of us, we could reduce applications or even take a break for a year or two.   Get soils tests so that you know for sure!!

Desk Duties--- Once the crop is in the bin, we will be working hard to evaluate things with you.  We will be asking you for information and it will help us both if you can stay caught up on your record keeping and provide timely responses.  It is also important regarding income tax management, whether you are trying to avoid a surprisingly high tax surprise or trying to avoid showing a loss on your Schedule F and wasting some deductions.  Spending time in your office may not be your favorite part of your job but it is vital to managing your farm.  If you need help keeping records, remember that Peoples State Bank does offer the Rec-Check system for accounting.

Healthy Husks??--- Another complication of the persistent wet weather is the potential for development of stalk rots and ear molds.  You may want to check some varieties to see their condition and the need for earlier harvest if stalk or kernel quality are issues.

Safety Snippets--- Some quick and important messages for fall:   Wear a dust mask when working around grain, you don’t want lung disease in your later years.   Know where everyone is at all times---kids, fellow workers, visitors etc, the big equipment and night work limit visibility so be aware.

Charge your phone—you need a way to contact help if you have or witness an accident or you are having a health issue….it is your lifeline.  Check Equipment—have a fire extinguisher on combine, safety shields in place, flashers and SMV signs on trailers and equipment for highway travel etc.

Slow Down---Use common sense, remember a stay in the hospital will delay your harvest a lot more than taking your time and working safely.

Good Luck

Mark