The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The Wisdom of Barnyard Bruke: September Already, Weather/Fall Concerns, Cover Crops, A Senior's Version of Facebook, Marine Enlistee

Greetings ta ever one in western Illinois and all readers of "The Quill".

September Already

Here we are now into the first week of September. Some warm weather remains with us and the corn is "turn'n" fast with soybeans close behind.

A few fellers have started harvest'n already with moisture levels be'n reported at 20%-29%.

I've not heard a reliable report on yields but some "experts" are predict'n yields will be off 10% from last year's records.

Weather/Fall Concerns

I spect, depend'n on how the rain fell this summer, some fields will be as good or better than last year and some fields will have lower and much lower yields. Overall, most fellers feel their yields will be good. Prices received fer their crops is another matter. I know of no farmer, who is dependent on crop revenue fer survival, that is happy with current prices. Many are look'n ta find space ta put this fall's crops into storage hope'n for better prices later on.

It is not infrequent ta hear a farmer say, "I'm hauling corn ta commercial storage and use'n my farm bin storage, as needed, for beans." There are farmers that took the gamble and forward sold some of their crops earlier in the summer when prices were better fer a spell. That move seems ta be pay'n off well if'n time'n was good.

The strong winds and heavy rains around these parts last Tuesday-Wednesday (28-29) snapped some corn fields and took down some beans. The corn will be more difficult now ta harvest, fer them damaged fields, and most fellers judge they can get under the beans with their combine platforms with less loss than the corn.

Western Illinois doesn't appear ta have near the wind damage or heavy rains as did west of the river and in Northern counties. With a generally dry summer, now some fellers are express'n concern fer the possibility of a wet fall at harvest time. It seems we haven't had one of them fer several years.

Today's equipment can handle the mud in the fall better than the equipment of yester year, it seems. However, whilst they can get through the field of mud better it sure makes a mess of things in the fields and on the rural roads. Next year's crops can be affected also from this fall's compaction, ruts, etc.

A lot of fellers are finished or finish'n up with silage fer this winter's feed. It's more important this year because dry weather caused a short hay crop and some of that hay even was used to subsidize pastures that dried out.

Cover Crops

Quite a few farmers are now arial seed'n their cover crop fer extra winter forage fer their cattle and fer conservation purposes.

The rain we are have'n will help that seed germinate.

Last year's dry fall fell a little short on good germination.

Some fellers are seed'n oats, others are seed'n wheat, and yet others are seed'n rye. They mix that seed, of which ever one they choose, with radishes and or turnips ta help the tilth of the soil.

After the first frost, cattle and deer go after them tops, which have accumulated sugars, like candy.

With the rains, the soils have loosened up a bit.

This is beneficial ta a degree fer those that yet do fall tillage.

It eases up on the draft and wear and tear of equipment, as well as fuel consumption.

Now with all of that, it's time for a little humor:

A Senior's Version of FACEBOOK

For those of my generation who do not, and cannot, comprehend why Facebook exists: I am trying to make friends outside of Facebook while applying the same principles.

Therefore, every day I walk down the street and tell passers-by what I have eaten, how I feel at the moment, what I have done the night before, what I will do later and with whom, I give them pictures of my family, my dog and of me gardening, taking things apart in the garage, watering the lawn, standing in front of landmarks, driving around town, having lunch, and doing what anybody and everybody does every day.

I also listen to their conversation, give them "thumbs up" and tell them I "like" them. And it works just like Facebook.

I already have 4 people following me, 2 police officers, a private investigator and a psychiatrist.

And if'n that's not enough fer ya here is a priceless letter from a farm kid who wrote home after join'n the Marines.

Hopefully, it's a little pick-me up that will help ya get through the day!

Marine Enlistee

Dear Ma and Pa:

I am well. Hope you are.

Tell Brother Walt and Brother Elmer the Marine Corps beats working for old man Minch by a mile.

Tell them ta join up quick before all of the places are filled. I was restless at first because ya get ta stay in bed till nearly 6 a.m. But I am getting so I like ta sleep late.

Tell Walt and Elmer all you do before breakfast is smooth your cot, and shine some things.

No hogs ta slop, feed ta pitch, mash ta mix, wood ta split, fire ta lay. Practically nothing.

Men got ta shave but it is not so bad, there's warm water.

Breakfast is strong on trimmings like fruit juice, cereal, eggs, bacon, etc., but kind of weak on chops, potatoes, ham, steak, fried eggplant, pie and other regular food, but tell Walt and Elmer ya can always sit by the two city boys that live on coffee.

Their food, plus yours, holds ya until noon when ya get fed again.

It's no wonder these city boys cain't walk much.

We go on "route marches," which the platoon sergeant says are long walks ta harden us. If he thinks so, it's not my place ta tell him different. A "route march" is about as far as ta our mailbox at home. Then the city guys get sore feet and we all ride back in trucks.

The sergeant is like a school teacher. He nags a lot. The Captain is like the school board. Majors and colonels just ride around and frown. They don't bother ya none.

This next will kill Walt and Elmer with laughing. I keep getting medals fer shoot'n. I don't know why.

The bulls-eye is near as big as a chipmunk head and don't move, and it ain't shooting back at you like the Higgett boys at home.

All ya gotta do is lie there all comfortable and hit it. You don't even load yer own cartridges. They come in boxes.

Then we have what they call hand ta hand combat training. You get ta wrestle with them city boys. I have ta be real careful though, they break real easy.

It ain't like fighting with that ole bull at home. I'm about the best they got in this except fer that Tug Jordan from over in Silver Lake. I only beat him once. He joined up the same time as me, but I'm only 5'6" and 130 pounds and he's 6'8" and near 300 pounds dry.

Be sure ta tell Walt and Elmer ta hurry and join before other fellers get onta this setup and come stampeding in.

Your loving daughter,


Well there ya have it then, straight from "Bertha." It's hard ta beat them "farmer's daughters" unless of course yer 6'8" and near 300 pounds. Even then she'll give ya a good run fer yer money!

Have a good rest of the week and this time of the year and I'll see ya in church.

Remember, wherever ya are, whatever ya be do'n "BE A GOOD ONE!"

Keep on Smile'n

Catch ya later

Barnyard Bruke