Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Planting Season's In Full Swing!

Planting season is a busy time here at Miller Farms! We've finished planting our peanuts and are currently planting cotton. We haven't planted any corn yet because those fields were too wet, and hopefully we won't have to plant any soybeans! If we plant soybeans, that means we ran out of time to plant cotton.


This is Lance, his Uncle Jim, and farm employee Anthony loading peanut seed into the hoppers.


We planted 150 acres of peanuts, 40 more than last year!

You can see Jim planting in the background, and Lance is running our new tractor in the foreground.

Lance is using the new tractor to row-till. Last year we bedded the peanut ground, (see the 1st picture in this post to see what bedded rows look like!) and that turned out not to be a good thing because of all the rain we had in the fall, the peanut combine picked up a lot of dirt with the peanuts. So this year, we disked the ground to flatten out the beds. We are using the row-till to lay off the rows to plant in.

Look Mom! No Hands!

Wait...and now Lance is napping while he's driving the tractor?

What's wrong with him? He's gonna wreck! Maybe get a ticket!

Nahh...Look at this fanciness we recently acquired!

What the heck is that you ask? Why it's GPS for the tractor! We had a Trimble Guidance system installed! It has auto-steer which drives the tractor for you! It uses satellites which helps farmers to row-till, plant, plow, spray, and harvest more accurately! It lets you know when you've overlapped rows and keeps the tractor/rows straight as possible. Once you've driven over a farm once, it will always know where the rows are. The only thing you have to do is turn around at the end of the rows, otherwise you'll just keep on going, probably right into a tree. There is an alarm that sounds every so often in case you do go to sleep like Lance.

Check out this cute doggie that joined us in the field a couple of days! He even has a cast on his right leg! He sure did like to try to hug you with it, lol.

We've planted almost 200 acres of cotton so far, and this is what it looks like now.
We're going to plant around 500 acres of cotton this year.

Here's what the peanuts look like at the moment...

They are just beginning to sprout from the ground!


Speaking of growing things...

The grass in our yard is finally growing! It still looks pretty brown right around the house, but is improving everyday!

Check out this rosebush that survived the house building! (Not many things did!)

What's my secret to growing great roses? I haven't touched it at all! It should live forever.

I have been trying to spruce the place up a bit. I was tired of everything outside just looking like dirt.

So I planted some flowers in pots to put on my porch.

And I planted 4 azaleas by the backporch.
Unfortunately one has died. I'm pretty sure it was dead before I even planted it. Considering they were bought for me at Christmas, I'm surprised any survived!

When we were walking around the yard, figuring out what trees to save before we started building, we decided to keep this thing. It was in the winter, so we couldn't tell what it was, just that we thought it had some flowers on it at one point.
Turns out it was a blackberry bush. Yay! Unfortunately it has all kinds of little bitty trees and junk growing in with it. It even has a pretty good size sassafrass tree, which I haven't decided if I want to keep or not. Are there any blackberry bush experts out there? I've never had one!

Our garden is actually surviving too!

I thought it was doomed when it rained 4 inches the day after I planted it. Most of it pulled through though. I only had 1 hill of squash come up out of 6, and about half of my okra drowned, so that will need to be replanted. I have 2 rows of tomatoes, bell pepper, okra, squash, and cucumber.
I have a few tomato plants, 1 regular and 4 cherry tomato plants, that already have small tomatoes on them. Yay! (As long as the peacocks don't find them!).


  1. Thanks for sharing this. I love reading about the peanut and cotton farming. That's something we don't have up here. Now, corn & soybeans I know about. Nice to see your landscapign coming along too. I remember when we built our house it felt like I looked at dirt and weeds forever.

  2. Steph, you guys are workaholics. GPS! My grandpa plowed with a team of horses.Way before my time, let me tell ya! I'm sure he'd have preferred a tractor with GPS! I've always found farming so interesting and you are the first real live farming family I've communicated with. I appreciate you letting us be a part of it. The watching part;) I think it's great. Sure keeps you busy and out of trouble;D

  3. I always enjoy you blog. I envy your way of life because it is all my husband wants to do is farm. We have the land but it is only suitable for several acres of corn and acres of hay. We try to go to Moultri Georgia every year to look and take in all the new stuff. We like our little farm and enjoy what we have. When those peanuts get up and ready I would love to have a big old bag of them to roast and boil. You just give me a call - we would love a day trip....

  4. Wow! Y'all have been busy! So glad to see that MOST everything is growing this year!


    Robin :o)

  5. An Automatic tractor, never would have guess. I bet the thing has a CD player. I'm glad to see advancement in farming, it's got to be a long hard day.

    Love your home and enjoyed the tour last month.

    (Lance is a cutie) lol

  6. A GPS in a tractor! What will they think of next?
    It sounds like you better send Henry out to guard those tomato plants.

  7. Blackberry bushes are super easy! Leave them alone and when they get to out of hand about every two years or so, prune them back. You will be able to tell right before spring what branches are dead and what ones are still alive. If you get tired of them all together you can mow it over and in about two years it will be back with a vengeance!

    Love the blog. We have chicken farms and cattle around these parts. Not much in the way of crops. Maybe a few soybeans and corn but nothing like what you have going on.

    Really cool. I will be getting my boys and coming back so they can see other plants grown.

    We hope you have a bountiful season!!!

  8. You guys are SO busy I get tired just READING about everything! It's been too wet up here to even get a garden in yet, but there is still plenty of time. I really enjoy reading about everything you do. GPS on a tractor is super cool! I know they use it to make the corn maizes up here in the fall. What has Henry been up to lately? Surely he must be getting into some kinda trouble? I think of him every time I see the KIA ad on TV!

  9. Thanks for the comments! Sorry I don't get to comment on yalls blogs as often as I would like, but I promise that I do read them! My dial up just won't let me comment!

  10. Yea for grass!! I soo glad ya'll are getting a lot done in the fields. Caleb hasn't read this yet, but I know he will be jealious of your auto steer! You flowers look great! as for blackberries all I can tell you is that drink a lot of water....espically when they are producing their fruit...that's how you get the big berries.

  11. Everything looks great--that rose bush is beautiful!
    Is your soil there very sandy? It looked like it in some of the pictures, but maybe that just the photo.

  12. We live on Sand Mountain in North Alabama, so our soil is pretty sandy. That's why we're able to grow peanuts. Usually peanuts can only be grown near the coast because of the sandy soil, but we happen to have some right here!

  13. Steph
    We loved everything that you sent last year. The kids loved all the snacks and the grape pop plus they had never seen real cotton before. The syrup was used on pancakes and was a definite thumbs up.

  14. I grew just a tiny bit of colored cotton a few years ago for my spinning. You have a great blog. Thanks for sharing your life.

  15. I am so interested in the peanut & cotton farming...we have nothing like that around here!

    Your house. is. amazing.

    I wish I lived there! Dreamy!