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Humphreys Farm has been serving the Northern, Virginia for over 10 years. We started with a part-time single tractor operation back in 1987 when we farmed only 50 acres. Now my sons have graduated school and are running the farm full time. We have expanded our operation to over 500 acres. We primarily grow horse quality hay but also grow rye and wheat straw.
   
Ray Humphreys Craig Humphreys Brandon Humphreys
Ray Craig Brandon
   

How Our Hay is Baled

We start by cutting our hay after the dew has set in to prevent the plant from flaking off nutritious leaves. We use New Holland Diskbines to cut our hay and straw as shown in the picture to the right. There we were cutting a rye field to sell for straw.

 

Next our hay is tedded. We may have to ted the hay multiple times depending on weather conditions. The less the hay is moved before being baled the more nutritious it can be. Alfalfa, for example, has small leaves which fall off when it dries.

Now the hay is dry and ready to baled. But before we can bale the hay, we must rake it into rows for the baler to pick it up. We use rotary and roller bar rakes to minimize handling and causing excessive dirt and dust in hay.

It is now time to bale. We bale hay in three different ways:

  • Using a Steffen Systems Bale Accumulator
  • Using a Bale Bandit Accumulator
  • Using a Round Baler

In order to quickly remove bales from the fields and to minimize leaf loss, we use a Steffen Systems Bale Accumulator attached to the back of a New Holland baler and a loader-mounted Bale Grab that handles the hay. These bales are 36" to 38" long and

We also use another machine which is called the Bale Bandit. This machine takes the bale from the New Holland baler and packs 21 bales into a 3x7 bale cube which then straps them together for easy stacking and moving.

The last way we bale hay is using a Round baler. This allows us to get hay off the field quickly. The bales are about 5'x5' and are round. They are heavy and require a tractor with loader to move them around.

Round Baler with New Holland Tractor

After the wagon is stacked off to the barn it goes.

 
 
 
 

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Created by: Aaron Humphreys