Thursday, September 02, 2010


9/2/10 Thursday
Man, it’s hot. Got out on the tractor shortly after Cherie went to work. At around noon I climbed into the big ford and left to get mail, more diesel for the tractor, and grabbed a bite to eat. Good thing I got diesel cause the tractor sure was thirsty for fuel. Took the whole five gallon can and still had room.

I re-disced the area I disced up yesterday due to the rain we got yesterday or last night (Don’t remember, just know we got rain sometime) The idea is to turn the moist dirt under with the idea of keeping it in the ground longer. Don’t know where I heard that, the idea seems to be in my head from somewhere. Not sure it matters much as the ground is dust dry this afternoon. I’m always listening and looking for knowledge on how to farm, eager to learn but without anyone to mentor me. The problem is that I have a shaky memory, though it is much better than it used to be, so there are all these bits and pieces of information I picked up from points now unknown. I try to put them together as best I can.

I disced under areas I had plowed earlier, plowed with plans of planting, only I never planted. All this work, tons of work, that never came to it’s fruition. Now I’m discing it all back under to destroy the weeds that grew where crops were never planted. I figured it would be easier to disc it under and replow the furrows, and much quicker than me spending days using a hoe to knock the weeds down. That’s the blessing of having the tractor. Later, when God and budget allows, I will be able to buy that device I see farmers using that has what looks like knife blades. They run it between rows and it evidently cuts the weeds down beneath the surface without touching the crops planted. In one pass, that takes seconds, they can do what it takes me hours to do by hand with a hoe.

I know there’s good money in farming, real good money, but it takes money to get there. As always, I do the best I can with what I’ve got. The tractor worries me. Even though I only have a disc and two bladed plow to pull with it, the tractor saves me tons of work and pain. It overheated and boiled over this afternoon. Not just a little bit, it spewed water and lots of steam out when I pulled it over and shut the motor down. I knew it was getting hot and it always seems to use about a half gallon of water every time I use it but this was worse than I’d seen before. The water bubbles a lot from the radiator when the motor is running so that tells me there is a head gasket leak or something similar that pressurizes the radiator. But it still runs and there doesn’t seem to be water in the oil. I’ll keep it running as long as I can and pray it holds together. Been like this since we bought it. Kind of worried about the oil though. I just changed the oil but there seems to be a whole lot more oil in the crankcase than there is supposed to be, and I know I filled it just right when I changed it. So where does extra oil come from in a tractor?

Boy, am I zoning. Guess all told I’ve been on the tractor about six hours and it’s pretty hot along with humid out there. Came in to let the tractor cool off, along with cooling off myself and drinking copious amounts of tea and water.

Whew!!! Thought I smelled something burning so rushed outdoors to make sure it wasn’t the tractor. The tractor is fine, or at least is not on fire. I had burned some piles of weeds so it was probably a whiff of that I detected. Promised Cherie I would wash the dishes for her today so this is a good time to do that. She’s been pretty stressed lately so I’m doing as much as I can to take the load off.

It’s already after 4:00 and I’ve still got so much to do. How I look forward to the days we have things running well, can afford employees and equipment, and thus run a profitable business. Did you know that an acre of greenhouse can easily produce more than 500 tons of tomatoes a year? That’s tons, as in 2000 pounds a ton. Do the math, it adds up to a million pounds of tomatoes a year out of one acre. Of course greenhouse operations are much more expensive, overhead wise, than growing out in a field. Because of that however, a greenhouse operation puts much more money into the local economy through wages paid to the larger and more skilled employee force, among other things. That is just tomatoes. My business plan involves ten acres of greenhouse operations that can grow just about anything I want.

I have a clear vision for where I want to go, and, with the help of God, I will get there. Meantime it’s a one man show and I keep welding up my hoe to keep it going as I wear it out. I just ran out and took a picture of this drawer where I put my used and worn gloves. The many gloves that are totally trashed don’t make it into the drawer, just the ones that might have a little life left in them. I buy and wear out about forty or fifty gloves a year. Buy them in packs of five at Harbor Freight.

The reason I’m saying this is that it chaps my ass to have some.......... (removed at wife's request)............. I work hard, I endure great pain, I press on through headaches and seizures, I wear out gloves and boots, striving towards the goal that lays before me. I love my wife so the last thing anyone wants to do is upset her, cause that upsets me. I guess I’d better settle down.


Loretta said...

I don't know anything about tractors, but when our big rig was doing that we had water in the oil. Not a good thing! I think it means a blown head gasket. I hope I'm wrong... but it may be fixable without to much expense, if you catch it early. Maybe you can google it and find out. Good luck.

Bob said...

Don't know much about diesels but I'm learning. I hope to build a barn where I would have room to work on things like this. Till then I'll nurse things along the best I can.