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#151403 - 10/09/08 03:20 PM Re: gardening...first season lessons [Re: NorCalDennis]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2919
Loc: Alberta, Canada
I'm curious, how are you threshing the wheat?

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#151408 - 10/09/08 03:54 PM Re: gardening...first season lessons [Re: dougwalkabout]
NorCalDennis Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 01/30/08
Posts: 61
Loc: Sierra Foothills, Nor Cal
I harvested the wheat with a scythe (sp), and did my best to keep the heads all in the same direction. From there I set out a tarp and placed a portion of the wheat on the tarp. I used a large leaf rake and beat the wheat until the heads were mostly detached from the stalks. At that point I continue to beat the heads while removing the chalf (sp). Eventually I hand rub the wheat heads until the seeds drop from them. From there I toss the remaining seed and chalf over the tarp during a light breeze until I have almost nothing but seed available.

So far I have spent a couple of hours doing the threshing and have about 7lbs of seed. I estimate that i have about another 30lbs of seed to still be removed.

I am guessing (and hoping) that as I learn how to be more efficient at this, I will be able to get through this process much more quickly. It reminds me alot of gold panning - you just keep working the payload down until there is nothing left but the gold.

Any suggestions here would be greatly appreciated!
_________________________
While I have long believed that I will never get old, I have come to the realization that sooner or later there will be more people younger than me.

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#151413 - 10/09/08 04:32 PM Re: gardening...first season lessons [Re: NorCalDennis]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2919
Loc: Alberta, Canada
I imagine the basic process hasn't changed much in 10,000 years.

One of the items we found on my grandparent's farm was a hand-made flail, a long pole attached to a short pole with a piece of heavy leather as the hinge. This design, and its variants for different grains, are older than the pyramids.

I've threshed grain with a combine (but not by hand), and the one thing I remember vividly is the importance of the moisture level. The grain stalks have to be thorougly cured (allowed to dry) before you start. Otherwise it's nearly impossible to separate the grain from the stalks and the kernel from the hull (chaff). After that, be aware of the ambient humidity. Even the big operators with half-million-dollar machines have to shut down when the dew starts to fall.

My 2.

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#151426 - 10/09/08 05:41 PM Re: gardening...first season lessons [Re: NorCalDennis]
KG2V Offline

Veteran

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 1371
Loc: Queens, New York City
Originally Posted By: NorCalDennis
...snip...Critters seem to be an ever present problem. The deer fencing worked on the big critters - even rabbits, but gophers, voles, moles, and ground squirrels seem to get in at will. We've been able to trap many of them, but they just keep coming!

...snip...


Just think of the critters as a 4 footed mobile crop.....
_________________________
73 de KG2V
You are what you do when it counts - The Masso
Homepage: http://www.thegallos.com
Blog: http://kg2v.blogspot.com

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