Summer Aficionado

The summer solstice occurs when a planets rotational axis in either the northern or southern hemisphere is most inclined toward the star it orbits. Earth has two summer solstices annually and last Thursday was the Northern Solstice.

OK.  Thanks for the climatology lesson, tell us something we don’t know.

Fair enough. It is hard to avoid mentioning this as there is so much about this season to appreciate.

Crop growth is at its peak.  Annual plants are entering their maximum growth phase. The vitality of our field crops and natural vegetation is exciting to observe. While on my bi weekly trail runs, I can almost feel the intensity of the surrounding forest.

Day length and daytime temps are at their peak. This is one of the reward’s for enduring the short days and cold nights of winter.  Out on the farm, our best time to improve our land and structures is between spring planting and fall harvest. The long days and warm temps are ideal conditions to support that effort.

Even though we think of Pinicon as a “grown up” company, opportunities for improvement are plentiful.

To handle the extra pigs coming from our Wisconsin sow unit, we are constructing a 5000 head nursery near LeRoy Mn. It will be one of the first filtered nurseries built in the area and it should result in fewer health challenges.

Thanks mostly to higher yields, there is a need for more storage. We will be building another bin in McIntire this year.

There will be several land improvement projects aimed at enhancing drainage, surface water management, and erosion control. There is a good chance we will be installing our first ever terraces this fall.

Smaller budget projects include upgrading the ventilation systems in the original finishing barns. The buildings will have more fan capacity to maintain temperature, more inlet capacity to improve air quality, and fully integrated controls.

Bluestem 2We refreshed the landscape in front of the office. Our in house horticulturalist Linda, recommended Little Bluestem, grass that will do well in wet conditions and add a little visual diversity.

If things go well, we may even have time to power wash the awning above the office entrance next week. It gets moldy and needs a good scrubbing every couple years.

From seven figure hog building projects to 45 minute housecleaning tasks, we are do our best to move forward while maintaining what is already in place.

Oh yeah, and lest I forget, it is mountain climbing season. Specific destinations are TBD, however the goal is four new summits in ’17 and completing all fifty six 14ers in ’18.


Here’s to summer and the possibilities unique to this season!