The Rooster Crows – June 24, 2022

By Bill Anderson

The 4 day stretch from Friday, June 17, to Monday, June 20, was sizzling hot, with the mercury hitting the upper 90’s on Friday and Monday, and getting over the 100 mark on Saturday & Sunday. You could have fried an egg on the sidewalk, if it wasn’t for the fact that eggs now cost about $9.00 a dozen, and are too expensive to fry on the concrete. . As a bonus, Mother Nature did throw in some 50 mph wind just to keep things interesting. The ample supply of soil moisture appeared to protect growing crops from damage, so far, but the thunderstorm that passed through on Monday evening was welcome.  It dropped some more precipitation that alleviated fears of a permanent drought. Roger Pearson reported .3 of an inch in his rain gauge, and both Norbert Kulzer and Larry Arneson reported that their gauges showed .4 of an inch.

Most farmers in the Rutland area completed their planting operations by the June 10 crop insurance deadline for coverage on soybeans. The crop insurance deadline for corn and wheat was back on May 31. It is estimated that approximately 20% of the normal crop acres were prevented from being planted due to this past spring’s excessive moisture, although, for some, the acres prevented from being planted was as high as 40% of normal. Some of those acres were under water, and some were just too soft & muddy to operate machinery on, unless you wanted to leave it there as a permanent landmark. According to Cam Gulleson, the acres left idle due to excess moisture this spring will likely be seeded to cover crops in the next few weeks. The cover crops will be able to be grazed or cut for hay.

According to Siri, the little know it all who lives in the I-Phone, the Summer Solstice arrived at 4:41 a.m. CDT on Tuesday, June 21, so the longest day and shortest night are now behind us. It’s all downhill from here. The next thing we know, it will be 20 below, the wind will be howling and the Christmas lights will be up. At least there are a few things out here on the prairie that are regular and predictable. It is interesting to note that, according to Siri, the Sun operates on Daylight Saving Time during the Spring & Summer months. Will wonders never cease?

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Hens Do Crow! June 28, 2019

By Deborah Banish and Bill Anderson

The huge cottonwood tree that stood in front of the house at 217 First Street for 117 years came crashing down at about 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 25, felled by the chain saw wielded by Jerry Schumacher of Oakes, with the assistance of the track-hoe operated by Calvin Jacobson. Water poured out of the tree as if it was running out of a hose reported Denny Pherson of Rutland, one of the many witnesses who gathered to watch the giant tree come down. Cottonwoods are hydrophytes, water pumps, and Mr. Schumacher stated that a cottonwood of this size would take in a couple hundred gallons of water a day. After it was downed, an examination of the base of the tree showed that about two feet of the center of the 7′ diameter trunk was hollow, rotted away over many years. According to Mr. Schumacher, the huge hollow tree was a disaster waiting to happen, and the lightning strike that split the tree, requiring its removal, actually averted a more devastating occurrence later on, when a northwest wind might have toppled the tree onto the house it had stood near since 1902. Saving a section of the trunk for a chain-saw sculpture project had been considered, but the chain saw sculptors contacted did not recommend it, as cottonwood tends to fall apart once it dries out. On the morning of Wednesday, June 26, water was still running out of the large sections of the trunk remaining on the yard. Mr. Schumacher had begun the removal project last Saturday, June 22, but a problem with the large bucket lift used to reach the branches at the top of the tree delayed completion of the felling process until Tuesday. So passes into history a landmark of the prairie.

Continue reading “Hens Do Crow! June 28, 2019”