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How much rain did you get?

There's a country song about complaints when it rains in town. We don't complain about rain out here, no matter what we're supposed to be doing because sometimes, the rain stops for really long stretches of time. The lack of rain is a HUGE issue when you till the soil because no rain means no moisture landing on that newly fertilized and planted seed. It is stressful to say the very least when you've spent so much and are at the mercy of Mother Nature.

That is one of the reasons why we stopped tilling the soil. While we have hundreds of acres, it isn't connected or fenced in such a way that it makes sense to try to harvest crops for selling, i.e., wheat, oats, or canola. Our fields are not big enough for today's machines.

Soil that is covered in growing things is better equipped to hold moisture and better able to stay where it is instead of eroding down a hill. So, when you see a place out here that is all grass or a place that is natural prairie, you get an idea of what the landscape looked before the marketing folks told us to tear everything up and plant wheat. The cattle were moved over this land on trails from Texas into Kansas. They didn't starve along the way, and no one was hauling bales of hay with them. No. Those cows were eating just like the buffalo did-- grazing as they passed and not returning to that spot until the prairie regenerated itself.

Sit in a restaurant or coffee shop or something similar out here after rain was anywhere in the area, and see how many times you hear that question-- "How much rain did you get?" Then, perhaps send a little prayer or good thoughts towards all those dusty folks who needed more than they got that time around.

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