From section control on his Case IH sprayer to an RTK system that keeps machinery from crushing crops, technology is essential to Tennessee farmer John Smith. It's a subject that he's passionate about, even in the middle of his 2013 corn harvest.
"A lot of our yield potential follows soil type, so we’re trying to push our best ground to produce more, and we’re trying to identify our weaker ground" to minimize risk, he tells Farm Journal Radio’s Pam Fretwell. In a given field, it’s possible to have between four and five soil types.
That targeted approach is on his mind during this year’s corn harvest, which is about 50% finished on his operation. He’s already looking ahead to 2014, when he plans to variable-rate his seeding and fertilizer. (Click here to learn more about Smith’s technology goals in an earlier 2013 harvest report.)
Between implementing new technology and harvesting and delivering his crops, Smith typically works between 16 and 18 hours. That leaves little time for sleep.
"I put up about 800 tons of straw a year, I bale all of my wheat straw," he says. "So tonight I will leave here and I will go to Evansville, Ind., to a company that I deliver straw to. We do that every week, and they use it to make their erosion-control netting you see on the side of the road."
Play the audio clip below to learn more about Smith’s operation and his use of farm technology in this edition of AgWeb’s Harvest Report:
Harvest 2013 Coverage
Corn Hybrid Traits: Similar but Different
Corn-to-Soybean Yield Ratios: History and the Future