Winter Preparation on the Farm: Threemile Team Prepares for Colder Months

With warmer weather quickly disappearing, and the days getting shorter, it’s a sure sign that winter is right around the corner. After harvest wraps up, our Threemile team will get the farm ready for the colder months ahead. 

  • Late summer/early fall: We plant alfalfa and triticale that will be harvested in the early spring as feed for our dairy cows, and we also plant peas or soft white wheat as a cover crop.
  • November 1: We stop drawing irrigation water from the Columbia River and our wells.
  • Late fall/early winter:
    • Our irrigation team tackles necessary repairs and updates on equipment.
    • Through the irrigation systems, we apply green water from the lagoons to the cover crops, which will grow all winter. Green water is rich in nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, which are essential in crop farming. 
    • We apply a manure compost to the fields. The compost is an output from the digester that, when worked into the fields, adds organic matter and nutrients back into the soil to help next year's crop.
    • We spread wheat or corn straw onto some of the fields and run a grain press or Diker across them, pushing the straw into the soil to prevent soil erosion. 

With harvest over, and water shut off, we want to thank our Threemile team for the hard work and dedication over the last few months!

It’s always a feeling of satisfaction to have harvest behind you and another crop in the barn. I can’t express enough to our team how much they are appreciated.  They are the best at what they do.  After a long, unusually hot year, our team is looking forward to winter hours, relaxing a little and spending the holidays with their families. But March will be here before we know it, and we’ll all be ready to hit the fields, looking forward to another harvest.

Greg Harris, Director of Farming