Osowski Ag Service: A harvester is never really idle
By Stephanie Osowski
Tuesday, Aug. 12
When harvesters get home and the wheat is still a couple weeks off, what do they do?
Other than go a little stir crazy, there is never a shortage of odds and ends. In the summer, our front yard changes bi-weekly. At home, it remains the same and desires some tender love and care upon our return. Out of the kindness of his heart, my Grandpa Bob tends to the mowing of the yard while we are away, along with the yards of all the rental property my mom owns (bless his heart because that number has reached double digits recently). So there’s the undertaking of the front yard, the house (which is slightly larger than our 42-foot trailer and has been uninhabited for two months), and of course, looking over and fixing the equipment to be certain the trip home didn’t cause anything to bounce out of place.
The copious amount of moisture our home area received this spring and into June was unreal. Anytime we would call home, it would have either recently rained a few inches or was in the process of doing so. Because of this, some crops in the area were drowned out. However, we are optimistic that the crops will pull through in the upcoming weeks. Between wheat, edible beans, soybeans, pinto beans and corn, Osowski Ag Service has a busy few months ahead of us.
Quote of the Day: “Didn’t we just leave for harvest yesterday?”
You might be a harvester if…you crane your neck while driving to check out other harvest action or any other farm equipment for that matter.
Monday, Aug. 18
This time of year, harvest is normally at full speed around Grafton, North Dakota. Not this year. I have touched on the crazy spring weather we had with the excessive rain, and now when we would like rain, we can’t get a drop. Isn’t that always the way? We are hoping harvest will start up in the next week so normalcy can be restored. In the meantime, I have been logging some hours in at my old high school part-time job being a carhop at Westside Drive-In. It’s been great fun, and I have been able to catch up with a lot of folks in town. Also, I have been able to babysit a few times for some of my favorite kiddos in town, so I can’t complain about the downtime.
In the recent days there’s a topic that has come to my full attention: finding hired help.
When I was younger, I remember Dad always having a different crew of hired helped every summer for harvest. There were a few that would return for a couple summers, but most often it was fresh faces. We used to need at least three or four every year. Not only did we need that many, but so did most other harvest crews. It used to be when harvest crews came to town, businesses would bunker down and the town would brace themselves for all them “crazy harvesters” who would populate the town for a week or two. Dad has made jokes that farmers would “lock up their daughters” so they wouldn’t get exposed to such a lifestyle. The more common sight with a harvest crew these days? Family owned and operated. Mom and Dad like to think the reason we (Brandon and I) make the best hired help is because we watched years and years of hired help, so we know the do’s and don’ts of harvest.
Perusing through the papers these days, almost every farmer in my county is looking for workers, along with traveling harvest crews. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to find help in our area with the oil fields out west gobbling up all the good workers. However, this trend is going on all across the Midwest. We are all hoping the labor force will strengthen in the area with all the ads floating around and that harvest will go off without a hitch!
Quote of the Day: “Let’s make like wheat and head out.”
Stephanie Osowski can be reached at email@example.com.