Fall harvest: A cycle of life

Growing up, I always liked September.  Along with cooler weather, the new car models were introduced, football season was upon us, and as a farm kid, fall harvest was a major event for the year.  This year was no different.

Loading the grain cart on the go

Now, though, I appreciate it even more. The equipment is more modern, some of the crops have changed, and the markets are much more volatile, but the feeling of caring for the land and the appreciation of the crop it produces is the same thankfulness of long ago.

For a farmer, this recurring cycle of life from the land is a rite of passage renewed each year.  It’s that cycle that supports the family, feeds local consumers, and feeds the world.  A farmer has a real advantage over most others.  In no other profession can you each and every day help support the lives of so many people.  The family that farms our land affects many.  Not only does their work help support our family, and the other families they farm for, it also supports their own four families, and the several other families and individuals that work for them each year, either year-round or seasonally.  That doesn’t begin to include the local grain handlers, transportation providers, grocery stores, millers and other processors, livestock feeders, ethanol producers and others.

Grain flowing on a perfect harvest day

When a harvest comes in, there is a tremendous satisfaction that a year’s labor has been worth it.   Whether a hundred years ago or today, when the grain is flowing, there is a thankfulness that comes from knowing that again you’ve been blessed with a crop.  It’s fun to see the looks on the proud faces of all those workers involved.  Everyone is part of the harvest family.  The owners, the farmers, the farmworkers, the grain elevator staff, everybody who has a part in bringing in the harvest, shares a joy few can imagine.

Our friend and tenant Darrell harvesting

Even though I now work in the city, I hope I never have to miss this time of year.  It lets me leave the stress and chaos of  ‘city life,’ and gets me regrounded in what I believe is the single most important industry in the world.  When you see the faith, the work ethic, the caring for the land and each other, and the pride of farm life, you never want to leave it, and if you must, you long for the next chance to return.  There is no better place to be.


One Response to Fall harvest: A cycle of life

  1. You made some good points there. I did a search on the topic and found most people will agree with
    your blog.

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