Friday, October 24, 2014

industrial harvest

it's october in northwest indiana and many of the industrial crops in the nexus are died back and dried sufficiently to be harvested on a sunny friday...this field of soy beans ( top photo ) and the one of dense yellow #2 ( second photo ) are actually two halves of one large field and the harvest of both has obviously begun...the jerusalem artichokes in the community garden are ready to harvest anytime as well and a few days ago , just to see what was what, i pulled one up by the stem and found enough tubers to feed several people without having to do much rooting around ( third photo )'s true that we are not growing food on an industrial scale ( if we were i don't think i'd want to be there ) and so our methodology for harvest is vastly simpler...there's something in the masthead of this blog about "work instead of chemicals" and the fuel for the combine being used to harvest the corn ( fourth and fifth photos ) is a petrochemical that's doing most of the work here...true it does harvest the fields more quickly than humans or a horse-drawn mccormick would and it does spread out the shredded stalks and husks and leaves as a mulch it kicks out the back...that said i wonder how long the equivalent number of humans producing the same amount of horsepower would take to bring in the harvest and if the would do an inferior job of mulching the field...questions i can meet with only supposition without research so we will leave that for another post...i am left wonder though, as petrochemicals become more difficult to procure ( no we are not out of oil but the costs of procuring it, both environmental and monetary, are only going to increase ) much of this sort of harvest is going to be reinvested in running this machine and how much will end up as mountain dew and extruded hot pockets?

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