Thats a good sight,I enjoyed reading some of it. thanks for sharing.I think I have 3 of these styles. How is your dad's crop doing? I have heard alot of americas farmers are really hurting because of the drought.
Thanks for asking! What I'm about to tell you--my dad would kill me for this, because farmers hate to talk about this with outsiders--is that this will be a very good year for us. We live in Southeastern Minnesota, with 200 acres in corn, 100 acres in soybeans, and 30 milch cows with about 15 acres for pasture and about 10 acres of woods on the ridge that's too steep to be farmed--my dad wants to do away with dairying, but my mom grew up with cows, and it was her parent's farm so . . .
Anyway, a lot of farmers are suffering, but we were blessed with just enough rain, in fact, some of the biggest crop yields in the state are going to be in our county, about 190 bushels/acre. At $8 a bushel, dad's estimating our corn crop to bring in a little over $300,000! I don't know about the soybeans yet. My dad feels kind of guilty about the whole thing because commodity prices are often proped up by government decisions--especially laws encouraging ethanol. Dad say's a lot of farmers are "tighter than a duck's ass" and think they shouldn't have to pay much in taxes even though the government has been turning them all into millionaries with the farm program. Dad wants an end to the "Bush-era tax cuts"--I don't know what they are, but he says they're bad.
Now you know why the price for good farm land is going through the roof. My mom and dad were lucky--they bought the farm from my grandparents when prices were more reasonable, and they paid it off over 20 years. A few years ago people were shocked when people were getting $6000 an acre. Now it's over $10,000 and climbing. I read about 120 acres in Northwest Iowa that just went for 20,000 an acre! That's one of reasons family farms are disappearing--a lot of farmers are selling out to corporations who are buying up farms as fast they can. They're the only ones who can afford to buy farm land anymore. Once they own the land, they tear down the old farm houses, the barns, the silos, the out buildings, and sell off the livestock and machinery and it's just wall to wall crops. In the spring they come in with a planter and in summer with a sprayer, then in the fall with the combines, but nobody lives on those farms anymore. There are fewer and fewer kids to go to school, fewer parents to serve on the PTA, no one to eat at the cafes or buy things at the local grocery stories or go to the country churches or be on the volunteer fire departments--it's funny how success can ruin things.