September, a welcome end to a long summer! I think I look forward to September and March more than any other months as they are the transition out of summer and winter. I was talking to my neighbor last night and we were commenting on how nice it was to be able to do things outside without oppressive heat and humidity. We also commented that if we could find a place to live where it was spring or fall year-round, we’d both move there… except neither of us would tolerate the crowds of people that moved there for the same reason.
That’s the great thing about living in the country, at least for me, I’m not shoulder to shoulder with other people. Last night I was checking my mail and my neighbor from down the road pulled up on his ATV and we had the nicest visit. We have this informal “Neighborhood Watch.” He’ll tell me when he’s going camping and I keep an eye on his place and I tell him when I’ll be gone, like to State Fair, and he watches my place. (We even feed each other’s cats! LOL)
Preparing for Harvest
Things are pretty quiet on most of my neighbor’s farms this time of year. We were getting kind of dry in late July and early August, then we had some nice (in some cases a little excessive) rains in mid-August. This really helped soybean yields, but was a little late for our corn. We’ll still have good yields, but if the rains had come several weeks earlier we would have had great yields. At least this ended the need for any more irrigation this summer.
As I drive to and from work each day, I frequently meet or follow a semi hauling grain to market. Moving the old grain to make room for the new grain is one step in preparing for harvest. Farmers are also busy cleaning bins and grain handling equipment to avoid the possibility of introducing insects or molds into their newly harvested grain. Remember to watch for harvest equipment on country roads now and in the next month or so.
Fall Weed Control
We’re past the time when most fields might be sprayed for diseases or insect pests. However, there is still some spraying going on, particularly in CRP or pastures. This is to control noxious weeds. Everyone, farmers and acreage owners alike, are required by law to control noxious weeds on their property. Later in September and even into October is an excellent time, if we have adequate moisture and warm temperatures, to control noxious weeds like musk thistle and Canada thistle. The plants are making food and storing it in the roots for next year’s growth. Herbicides applied at this time will be translocated to the roots providing better control.
For the same reason, this is also the best time to control perennial broadleaf weeds in the lawn such as white clover, dandelions, and ground ivy. We are not required by the weed laws of Nebraska to control these, but we can be expected to control these by the “weed laws of the house…” and I
think know I am more afraid of my wife than I am of our county weed control superintendent!
You shouldn’t need to worry about controlling annual lawn weeds like spurge, crabgrass or foxtail at this time of year, the first killing frost will take care of those for you. However, if you did have a problem with them this year, be ready to apply a timely pre-emergence weed killer (crabgrass preventer) on your lawn around the first of May next year. If you had a serious problem with these weeds this year, make a second application in early July next year to give you extended control later in the summer.
So until next month, get outside and work on a project you’ve been putting off because it was too hot and humid (my excuse), enjoy the beauty of this great time of year as we transition into fall, and have fun on your acreage!