Raising Cattle: It’s a Risky, Blessed Business
CommonGround Blog
by missy@agency1879.com
3w ago
Rachel Gray grew up raising cattle with her dad. Then she made a bold change to their operation when she took over the farm. What does she have to say about the life of raising cattle? She says it requires courage, creative thinking and taking time to recognize the gifts of the job. I love my job because I love the hustle and business side of raising cattle to sell to farmers. It takes boldness and courage to raise cattle for a living. Thankfully I’m up for that challenge. My name is Rachel Gray, and I raise development heifers at Little Timber Farms in Minnesota.  What do I mean when I ..read more
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Soil Secures the Future
CommonGround Blog
by missy@agency1879.com
2M ago
How Soil Health Shapes Generational Farming Ellyn raking corn stalksSoybeans planted into no-till fieldHy Test Ag LLC (the family) With a mindset of leaving their land better for the next generation, healthy soil is now the focus of Ellyn and Jacob Oelfke’s family farm in Minnesota. My husband and I are co-owners and co-operators of our farm, HyTest Ag LLC, in Minnesota. This year is our fourth growing season as the primary farmers after fully taking over from the previous generation in 2020 along with my husband’s sister and her husband, Jessica and Ben Flygare. The transition was important t ..read more
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Driving the Combine: My Timely Rite of Passage
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
3M ago
Kristie Swenson, a farmer from Tremont, MN, tried a new thing during harvest 2023: She drove her family’s combine through 2,000 acres of corn and soybeans. I live and work on our family’s 2,000-acre corn and soybean farm in Tremont, Minnesota. My typical day during harvest typically includes working my full-time off-the-farm job, making dinner for the kids and field meals, taking the kids to say hi to dad, helping with homework and handling bedtime. But then my role changed big-time in 2023. On Labor Day of 2023, a forklift on our family’s farm in Tremont, Minnesota rolled over my dad’s hand ..read more
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Winner Winner: It’s Hay for Dinner!
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
How Carla Schultz Handles Meal-Planning for 50 Head of Cattle Most people know that cattle eat grass and hay. But how do they get the just-right amount of feed that they need all year? It requires planning, plus a contingency for the inevitable in farming: surprises. Every year, my husband and I crunch numbers to figure out how much hay we need in order to feed our cattle throughout the year. And then, of course, we get surprises throughout the year that impact our feed options. Here’s a glimpse inside how we make it all work to ensure our 50 head of beef cattle are well-fed here at Eigh ..read more
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O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
Learning From Their Beauty with Amy Cawley If you’re curious about the adventures of Christmas trees before they get cut and decorated for the season, here’s a little glimpse behind-the-scenes with Amy Cawley at Cawley Family Farm in Maryland. It’s that time of year again! Our first pre-cut trees have arrived. Dad has been drilling the tree trunks, setting up the tree stands and filling them with water. The train sets are ready. The wreaths are under construction. The parking lot spaces have been marked. I have organized the cash register. Families are already out here taking their annual Chr ..read more
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Don’t Clean Those Floors!
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
Andrea Kientzy’s Holiday Advice from Years on the Farm Andrea Kientzy, a Missouri beef cattle and row crop farmer, has learned that being flexible is what can make things truly memorable. Food spills on the floor. The pie gets left in the freezer. Rolls get burned in the oven…again. Then dinner is held up because of farm chores. These things used to really irritate me during the holidays. I think most people can relate.  I grew up in San Bernardino Valley, California. Then I met my husband in Missouri and joined him on his family farm after we got married. We’ve been farming together now ..read more
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This Marketing VP’s Farm Passion: Pumpkins
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
Q&A with Kate Lambert Kate Lambert, a Missouri farmer and Vice President of Marketing at FCS Financial, has turned a passion for community-building into a local pumpkin farm extravaganza. Question: Did you grow up on a farm? Answer: No, I grew up in suburban Chicago, about 65 miles from downtown. I was a member of the National FFA Organization and loved working with animals. I never dreamed I would end up on a large farm. I met my husband through FFA as a teenager. Now, we are raising two kids on our farm in Missouri. I am the Vice President of Marketing at FCS Financial, while also helpi ..read more
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Protecting Our Cattle in Excessive Heat
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
Purpose-Drive Cattle Farmer Joan Ruskamp Mother nature can be cruel. Joan reflects on the extra measures that can prevent the grief and hardship of losing cattle. Our cattle have an incredible purpose: To nourish us and countless others as food. My job is to care for them on our feedlot alongside my husband and business partner, Steve. Together we have a specific, purpose-driven mindset on our farm: We are stewards of our animals. Every day it is our job to make them as comfortable as they can be. Yet mother nature can be very cruel. Whatever weather event is thrown our way, we want to be ..read more
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Next Year’s Garden: 5 Ways to Plan Ahead
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
Practical Gardener Kelly Kamyszek According to Kelly, anyone can grow a green thumb. You simply need good inspiration and a smart plan. As a child, I grew up admiring my mom’s resourcefulness when it came to putting food on the table. Every year she’d plant her garden. After harvest, I would help her to can and store all of the vegetables we would eat that year. These memories fueled my desire to start my own garden as an adult. My husband and his family once ran a roadside stand specializing in tomatoes, but we found it difficult to manage the demands of the farm while trying to keep one-hun ..read more
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“Plotting” for the Future
CommonGround Blog
by amy@agency1879.com
5M ago
Conservation Farmer and Seed Tester Belinda Burrier Belinda Burrier and her husband are farmers who have been awarded several times for their focus on conservation practices. The duo consistently improve their conservation efforts by testing new things, including the testing of new seeds in “test plots.” Did you know that farmers have a tremendous variety of seeds to choose from each season? We have countless magazines and online resources available to peruse different features and benefits of each seed option. Often farmers will try different options on “test plots” to see how seeds perform ..read more
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