It’s become a rite of winter at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon. A battle with invaders from the north.
Hundreds of Canada Geese descend upon the farm this time of year to raid our Risk™ malting barley. From the air, the vast fields of green barley shoots are a target that’s too attractive to pass up.
We go on the counter offensive, harassing the geese with rifle shots in the air, riding through fields in our ATVs, or sending the dogs out to chase them away. These skirmishes drag on for weeks or months.
A flock of Canada Geese arrive at Rogue Farms to join their birds of a feather in the annual raids on our barley fields.
This year, the geese outsmarted us.
Unless you’re a farmer, what we’re about to tell you may not make a lot of sense. Not at first.
We started working the fields where we’ll plant our Dare spring malting barley. Actually drilling seeds in the ground? No. That’s five to six months from now. But there’s a lot to do between now and planting time.
Plowing a field of spring barley begins in the fall at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon.
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When the last bushel of Rogue Farms Dare™ malting barley came in off the field, you could almost hear a collective sigh of relief across the farm in Tygh Valley.
This was our best barley growing season ever. We reaped, threshed and winnowed 1,063,521 pounds of Dare™ and Risk™ malting barley.
But it could just as easily gone the other way. In fact, that’s exactly what’s happening to our fellow farmers just east of here.
Postcard perfect weather greeted the combines as they began the harvest of Rogue Farms Dare™ malting barley.
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We did more field burning over the weekend at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon.
This is an important step in preparing the soil for when we plant our next crop of Risk™ malting barley. Fire sterilizes the soil, killing off weeds, weed seeds and diseases. Burning also helps by converting the left over field stubble into pure minerals we can plow back into the soil to improve its health. What you may call charred straw, we call fertilizer.
We want our Risk barley to have the best possible start when we plant it, probably about a month from now. Beer and Spirits are only as good as their ingredients, so we want to grow the finest proprietary palate of flavors we can.
Your parents probably told you not to play with matches. So if you’re a bit jealous about what we did last week at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon – we understand.
It's been quite a week at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon. We just finished harvesting 100 acres of Risk™ malting barley. Hard to believe that we planted these seeds just nine months ago.
Over winter, we watched and worried as a deep cold snap damaged some of the young shoots. But spring came and so did the sun, drying out the soggy soil left behind by the winter rain. Under picture perfect, clear blue skies, our Risk™ barley sprang to life, leafing, tillering, booting, heading, filling and ripening.
And then it all comes down to a week in July with a starting date determined by Mother Nature.
In all the years we've been farming, we've never seen a season quite like this one.
A hot July kicked our crops into overdrive, but especially our grains, the wheat and corn we grow at Rogue Farms in Independence and the malting barley we grow in Tygh Valley.
After a brief rain delay, we’re back in the fields at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, harvesting our 100 acres of Risk™ malting barley.
It’s been touch and go the last couple of days. Heavy rain and lightning rolled through the farm on Wednesday afternoon. So we worked when weather permitted, and took a break when we had no choice. This morning, we woke up to bright sunny skies and a forecast for perfect harvest weather over the next several days.
The calendar for our 2014 Beer And Spirits Harvest is taking shape. So we’re officially inviting you to visit us at Rogue Farms for the harvest season. Here’s a look at what crops we’re harvesting this year and when. Keep in mind that these date are estimates. The exact timing is up to Mother Nature.
Eight months and nine days after seeding our 100 acres of Risk™ winter malting barley, the time has come.
This morning, our combines rolled into the fields at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon to bring in our first barley crop of the season.
All of the hard work we put into preparing the soil, planting the seed, watering and cultivating the crop is finally paying off!
There’s nothing quite like seeing 100 acres of barley waving in the wind to give you that proverbial lump in the throat. It reminds us why we became farmers.