Crimped rye for sunflowers and corn. 2022

Things for crimping rye:

The crimped rye can leave a good residue mat that really does hold back the weeds.

The second season after crimping the ground still has a good residue cover and with the clover I broadcast last fall there is now a very good crop of clover which I then used as pasture for the horses. I will clip the weeds as they show with the sickle mower to help eliminate the weeds from producing seeds.

Using the crimper on the front of the tractor and the planter behind seems like a good idea and only uses the tractor once.

Before the sunflowers or corn germinates it is a good idea to broadcast some clover which will come up when the sunflowers are harvested and makes a very good start to the pasture.

Things against crimping rye:

Planting rye and then killing it does not seem like a very good idea especially when it could have been harvested.

If the soil organic matter is low one may not get a good enough stand of rye for crimping.

If one is going to cultivate you may need about 4 passes with the cultivator using more fuel and time

Above: the crimper was on the front and the planter on the rear as used in the spring of 2022.

Update June 11 2023:

The amount of sunflowers per acre needs to be reduced so we have more like 20,000 seeds per acre but this will depend on what the recently planted field of sunflowers indicates. On the trial planting area the seeds are up and doing well even in the drought. In the trial area there was no cover over the planted area which concerns me with the crimped rye field planted with sunflowers. I also feel I crimped it too early and should have waited a few more days. The row cleaners work very well but I feel that where the seeds are planted needs to be bare and not covered with crimped rye. I feel that I crimped the rye a few days later which may have contributed to the rows being more covered by the crimped rye. I did leave some areas bare but as of June 11 I do not have any sunflowers showing but there is some corn up.

I think I could also pant the sunflowers deeper.

Sunflowers were planted on May 29 2023 corn was planted in the crimped rye on may 30 2023

The rye was not as thick on the corn field when I crimped and planted it.

August 13 2023. Mat and Dorothee in the sunflower field showing the crimped rye at our feet.

August 15 2023.

We have sunflowers and lots of them!!Looks like a good year.

July 26 2023. The sunflowers are enjoying the sunshine and lots of rain.

July 21 2023. The sunflowers are growing well but they do not seem to be really sturdy yet. They are planted too close but they are now turning to face the sun. The rye has held up well and there are hardly any weeds... but there is some alfalfa showing which is just fine.

It is quite hot and we have had a few thunderstorms to keep the sunflowers well watered.

They are starting to canopy. I used a 32 inch row.

July 17 2023 . The sunflowers are looking very good.

July 14 2023, The corn is also getting taller but not so well as the sunflowers. The soil was not so good and the rye was planted late in the fall.

July 14 2023 .The sunflowers are coming along well!!

July 12 2023 The corn is not doing so well but there is corn there and growing every day. A few weeds too and lots of clover.

July 12 2023. The sunflowers are growing and really no weeds but some of the alfalfa is coming through.

July 5 2023. The sunflowers are looking very good. We have had a lot of rain and now we have sunshine.

July 5 2023 The corn planted in the crimped rye does not look so good. I planted the rye much later and the soil was not so good. The rye was not so thick when I crimped it. There are a few weeds too.

July 3 2023. Sunflowers are showing well and coming up through the crimped rye. Just too many sunflowers so I need to reduce the seeds per acre. Been very wet lately.

June 24 2023. And there are a lot of sunflowers coming up. In fact I put in too many seeds per acre. Next year I will relax the amount.

While this seems like a long time for the sunflowers to germinate it does appear to be going very strong now. There was period of about three weeks where we had no rain and now there is a gentle rain and the sunflowers are germinating very well.

June 24 2023 Sunflowers appearing through the crimped rye!!! There seems to be little difference in the germination of the sunflowers under the crimped rye and the areas with little rye cover.

June 7 2023. Here is one of the rows that where I planted the sunflowers. At first the row cleaners did a very good job of making the path through the crimped rye showing earth below. I re rolled the rye and it partially covered many of the rows made by the row cleaners. I will watch carefully to see it the slight covering of the rye hampers the germination.

June 7 2023. I did a trail run of planting the sunflowers in the pasture and they came up. They are too close so if the ones in the field come up I will have fewer population next year.

May 30 2023. The corn field was planted. Row cleaners worked well and seeds seemed to be about 1.5 inches deep.

May 29 2023 . The rye started to spread pollen very early so I got everything ready but I still ran out of fluid and seeds so I need to do more pencil work

May 29 2023. The new row cleaners did an excellent job of opening a path through the crimped rye. Not the one notched press wheel.

May 29 2023. The rye was very tall and laid down well. I did have difficulties choosing the correct amount of down pressure on the crimper as the more down pressure the more difficult it was to steer. I did use braking for some steering. Just in case I will run the crimper over it again tomorrow.

March 16 2023 The clover is coming through on last years sunflower field. Notice the crimped rye still visible and starting to decay.

Dec 13 2022. This is the setup for cleaning the sunflowers. It is driven by a small Lister diesel and needs two forklifts. Works fairly well but I need to make a smaller screen since too many very small sunflowers are being put in the trash.

Nov 6 2022 The field of rye with peas. Looking very good for crimping next may 2023.

Sept 9 2022. I plowed, disc'd and planted the rye and clover in my hay field of alfalfa/ grass field to start 2023 field for sunflowers planted in crimped rye. This field should be good as it was a hay field with a lot of alfalfa. I also put on 1000 lbs/ acre of tekmac which is about 7% nitrogen.

Sept 1 2022. Here is the field of sunflowers. They are short and as you can see lots of weeds too. I will get a crop pf seeds for our sunflower oil. The good thing is this field will be a pasture next year and the crimped rye underneath will help the soil health. First I will bush hog the sunflower stocks once it is combined. I will not till it but run it over with a disc and then broadcast various seeds for the pasture and also clipping any weeds before they flower during the summer.

August 8 2022. Some of the sunflowers are looking good but there are quite a few weeds.

July 31 2022. Snapped a photo of the sunflowers in evening. One can actually see sunflowers in the weeds

July 26 2022. This part of the field does not look so good as the weeds are taking over. I do have a patch of thistles to deal with so I took the lawn mower out and cut them.

July 26 2022. We finally had a good rain that filled our 1000 gal garden water tank. WE have not had rain from June 9 when I planted the sunflowers till July 18 2022.

This looks promising but there are weeds. A little worried that the sunflowers are so late that they will not mature.

July 14 2022. There are some rows of Sunflowers starting in the field but there has been no rain since I planted the sunflowers. As you can see from the picture there are weeds coming through too. In some areas it is bad and in others there are very few weeds.

The main thing to remember is that all of this will be a pasture next season and it will not be tilled for a few years. The horses will tramp down the weeds and eat the clovers then I will clip it to cut of any flowers from the weeds. I was dismayed to see a number of thistles in a part of the field but hopefully the clipping and horses will make them dissappear.

July 11 2022. There are a few rows of sunflowers coming up but things are very slow as we lack rain. The areas where I had planted deeper and used cleaned seeds seem to be doing better in producing sunflowers.

There are weeds too.

July 9 2022. There are sunflowers coming up despite the drought. As you can see there are also some weeds too.

July 6 2022. This is a start of a row of sunflowers. Still no rain but there are a few sunflowers showing so the crimped rye is helping reduce the evaporation but more rain would be better.

July 1 2022. This is a little discouraging, there has been no rain since I planted the sunflowers . There are a few partial rows of sunflowers but not what I would like. Hopefully there will be rain later this week. I planted on June 8 and that makes it more than three weeks with no rain.

June 20 2022. And a few more popping up.

June 20 2022 Not a lot of sunflowers showing but some are poking through.

June 16 2022. Another sunflower popping up. Lets hope there are lots more.

June 16 , 2022. We have a germinated sunflower.

I have a few regrets on this sunflower planting. I feel I should have taken more time to see if the closing wheels were really working well. I was also not sure of how deep the seeds should be. Some authors recommend putting them quite deep at 3 inches. On the east side of the field I set the depth to 4 holes and the west side on 5 holes. Have to see which does better. I also had cleaned seeds for the west side the east had just sunflower seeds from the bin.

I used the same seeding rate for the corn and the corn are far too close which was surprising that they all seemed to germinate.

June 11 2022. Another photo of the double disk planting. Looks better on this one.

June 11 2022. Another view of the double disk slicing into the crimped rye.

June 11 2022. I removed the crimped rye covering. This photos shows that my closing wheels may not have worked that well. Since I am planting into the crimped rye I can't use a slotted wheel since it would bind up. Maybe I just needed more spring pressure on the closing wheels.

June 9 2022 A fresh look at the crimped rye with the sunflowers planted in there somewhere.

June 9 2022 This is the field After crimping and planting the sunflowers.

I felt a bit rushed using the crimper and sunflower planter. I had upped the amount of sunflower seeds needed to be planted and ran out of seeds so just had to put in the non cleaned sunflower seeds from the bin.

Knowing the amount of pressure to put on the crimper was difficult. If I put down pressure on the crimper it would lift the front wheels off the ground which made steering difficult so I had to use the brakes to steer which was slow.

The planter and crimper lined up nicely so I did not have to worry about markers on the planter.

June 8 2022

Did the crimping and planting of the sunflowers

Adjusted the amount of seeds to be planted by upping the rate to about 40,000 seeds per acre.and at the end had to just use seeds from the bin as I had run out.

The crimper works fine but had some difficulty adjusting to the amount of down pressure

Used both the steering and the brakes to guide the crimper.

Adjusted the depth on the planter so it was not so deep.

The east side of the field had more depth, the east had 5 holes both sides on the planter depth

Have the crimper on the ground then bring up the planter. If the crimper is up and you then change the hydraulic outlet lever to use the planted there is quite a shock to the hydraulics. Raise the planter then raise the crimper

The liquid fertilizer pump did not work well at the high seeding rate. Read only about 10- 15 psi at fourth gear at about 1800 rpm.

Used about 3/4 of the tanks filled with agsol 13 and water.

Crimping and planting in one pass.

April 24 2022. I dug up some of the corn I planted a week ago as a test and found good rhizopheres on the roots. I unfortunately lost some of the root coatings in pulling it up but they are there so the microbes are working. I used the soil from the field that I planted the rye in for crimping which will have the sunflowers and corn this season 2022.

April 24 2022. Planted some corn to test the amino grow ( amino acid) and compared ti to no amino acid. While it may not be evident in the picture I felt it did show a more vigorous growth with the amino acid.

April 24 2022. The plain test on the corn an d sunflowers.

March 2022 showing the crimped rye from last year which is just starting to show some of the red clover I planted in the sunflowers.

This was test to make sure the depth was correct for the seed firmer on the Kinze planter in the spring of 2021

Sunflowers showing in the crimped rye summer of 2021. I was very impressed with the result as this was my first attempt at planting sunflowers in crimped rye. I did notice that the germination rate was a bit low so for 2022 I am going to plant a higher population and roll the field after planting to help insure good soil to seed contact.

Spring of 2021 crimping the rye. The method of having the crimper on the rear of the tractor does not work well as the rye pushed down by the tires just comes back up so for 2022 I will put the crimper on the front of the tractor and put the planter on the rear and do the crimping and planting at one pass.