Sow It and Reap
Doug and Nancy Rupp farm 2,000 acres of corn and soybeans in northwest Ohio, near Stryker. The Rupps are progressive farm family operators who use marketing strategies, technology and teamwork to attain the on-going success of their farming enterprise.
While Doug farms full time now, he taught business and free enterprise classes for 30 years at the local high school and community college and also ran a painting contracting business, all the while building his farming operation. At one point in his teaching career, Doug also coached the high school wrestling team.
Nancy was a teacher and guidance counselor for 39 years, and continues to work in the Pettisville, Ohio, school system part-time. In addition, she manages the farm finances.
In this blog, Nancy will chronicle their experiences as one of the Ultimate Farm Quest case study families.
Welcome To Our Farm
Aug 26, 2010
We’re Doug and Nancy Rupp. We farm about 2,000 acres of corn, soybeans and wheat. We’ve been farming since 1979, and before that Doug helped his father farm.
Along with the farm, we run a painting contracting business; plus, Doug is a retired school teacher and wrestling coach. I still teach part-time.
We probably have a lot of the same dilemmas everyone else has with the markets, weather and technology issues. A large amount of our time and effort goes into developing and improving our operation. We’re on a continuous mode of trying to improve, knowing there’s a better way of doing everything we do.
Some of the things we’ve done include adopting a number of technologies that we believe have helped us, like variable rate seeding. We have a consulting agronomist, and we do different types of lime with different utilizations of those tests. We have yield maps to use for variable rate seeding and for RTK in our guidance systems. We’re using fertilizer by the row and investing in the use of insecticides and fungicides. We think both of those have been instrumental in our yields and increased productivity.
We try to continually raise the bar on our productivity, and we've improved our corn and soybean yields significantly. Our yields on corn average 190 bushels per acre, and our soybeans average about 60 bushels per acre. Wheat yields are typically in the mid to upper 90's.
We try to pay attention to the details of our operation. Doug goes to a lot of seminars to learn what we should look at and evaluate. I think that’s been important for us, and it’s been exciting as well. We're always looking to do a better job.