The end of the year provides many reasons and opportunities to reflect and create resolutions. The same should be true with your farming operation. It is important to create new goals and initiatives that you would like to implement over the next growing season. The winter season provides the opportunity to put in the preparation needed to make your new goals a reality.
Farmers and producers have led the sustainability effort for years. They work hard to maintain the soil that in turn maintains their livelihood. The winter season provides the opportunity for farmers to plan out their strategies for sustainably caring for their fields.
Some of the items to reflect and act upon are:
• Review your soil nutrient profiles. Evaluate your soil sampling results and prepare sound nutrient management plans to maximize high production soils and find ways to address your more challenging locations.
• Make an efficiency move. Visit with your equipment dealer on new minimum till and strip till equipment. Or identify other options that will improve fuel efficiency or increase your uptime in the field. Maybe it is identifying a piece of land that shouldn’t be in row crops and converting that into another useful platform. There are all sorts of efficiency upgrades you can make if you have the desire to.
• Do your seed homework. Research hybrid selection. While 2021 was a tough crop year for some, there was a tremendous amount to learn. What hybrids worked and which didn’t? What stood up and what fell over? What hit the yield mark and what didn’t? Collect your data and observations and meet with your local seeds expert to come up with an even better crop plan for 2022.
• Plan ahead. There is no better time to get some maintenance done on your equipment and get prepared for next spring. The lead time it takes to get parts is getting longer, so plan your needs out and get the necessary components to your farm well ahead of spring planting. You want to be fully ready to hit spring planting as soon as mother nature allows.
The winter season is a great time to reflect on the past year’s crops and what you learned. It also presents a great chance to look into any new items you are excited to try that might strengthen your farming operation.
We all know that a farmer’s job is never really done. There is always something new to consider and something exciting to look forward to. The winter time and the new year provides a great opportunity to look back on your hard work and make resolutions for the future to come.