Chopping Earlage

Earlage is the cobs, ears, and husks of the corn plant, all chopped up into little pieces for cattle feed.

Chopping earlage is much like chopping hay or chopping corn silage.  The chopper just gets to wear a different head.  The attachments on the front of the chopper or combine are called heads.  There are many different kinds of heads for different crops, as they are all gathered in a little different way.  Some crops are cut off (soybeans and silage corn), and others are simply picked off the plant or the ground (corn and hay).

This corn has matured and is beginning to die and dry out, which is perfect for making cattle feed.

Anyway, earlage is made from the ear: the kernels, husk, and cob of the corn plant.  For us, it is an excellent cattle feed.  The corn is higher in moisture which makes it more palatable to the cattle.  Plus it gives us some extra roughage (the husk and cob) to feed the cattle  that would otherwise not be used.  It also allows us to get in the field earlier in the season. Which is always a good thing when you are battling mother nature and time during the harvest season.

Hills. They make me nervous!

About half of our acres of crops are in hilly land, which makes for some inevitable nervous situations when it comes to running equipment.  We have to be very careful of our speed when driving on hilly terrain, as some of the equipment can be top heavy and poses the risk of overturning or sliding down a hill. Click here to see a video of the chopper running on one of our steeper farms.

Let me tell you, as a girl who grew up in the flat country of Iowa, adjusting to the hills has been hard for me.  My hands are sweating just thinking about some of the situations I’ve gotten myself into when driving in the hills.  Praise the Lord for four-wheel-drive and big engines!!  Enough said. 😉

Liz

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