We do not run irrigation lines in our hay fields, we prefer to let nature do it’s thing with our grass and pastures. Because we are not forcing the land to produce the next crop of hay we use the areas of hay fields as grazing fields for the cows once the hay harvest is complete. That means we do not have a second cutting or third cutting as some farmers are able to do, it also means that the one crop we do get is precious and is all that sustains our cattle throughout the winter beyond what they are grazing.
Now that we are done with the hay equipment for the year, it is time to get it cleaned up and stored away for next year. The process of getting all the chaff, hay seeds, dust, dirt and clingy wads off each begins with the high-powered air blower.
As each piece of equipment is cleaned, it needs to be stored away. The equipment takes up a lot of valuable real estate in the barns and it takes a jigsaw approach to get it all put back where it needs to go so they all will fit.
The first piece to go in is the Henry loader, the handy elevator that scoops bales off the ground and drops it over the top of the truck bed for stacking. The Henry has to be rolled in by hand in order for the tall top to fit into the space between the rafters in the barn. It takes two people to inch the Henry around the pole, past the stack of lumber that is scheduled to be used on a new fence in the bull pen during the winter months, and back into the designated resting place.
Next is the rake that has to tuck in right in front of the Henry without hitting the cement wall and leaving a walking path to the back of the barn that holds spare parts for year round repairs.
After the rake, the baler is inched in and with the help of hydraulic power of the tractor is swung to one side so the back of the mower envelopes the handles of the rake that protrude out. If the baler is in the correct position, the mower gets moved in next and fits snugly right up to the hitch of the baler.
If all goes correctly up to this point the fluffer gets folded up into a compact shape and wheeled into the last remaining square footage of the barn equipment area. Luckily, this year everything seemed to fit in correctly the first time, this is not always the case.
Hay season 2020 now can begin to become a memory, except we still haven’t unloaded The Big Red Beast, it may take a day or two before I want to mess with it.
You gotta see the pictures! They are posted with this story on SchmidlinAngusFarms.com. While you are there, if there is any online shopping you plan on doing, please go through my picture links. By doing so, I may make a small commission without a charge to you! The commissions help pay for my user charges for this site, Thank You for supporting the farm