June and the sun beats down on the farm. I decided that I should get my own silo ready for the crops that are growing in my fields. I have located it in the farmyard…

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…Which means that the Harvester has had to find a new parking spot – I’ve moved it to the grass behind the railway depot👍 On the slope beside the track, the poppies are putting on a fine display…

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…I own this bit of land but I don’t think I can do a lot with it other than perhaps having a picnic😂 However, we’re probably going to be too busy for one of those – we had our first harvest job of the year and dispatched the tractor and harvester over to the next valley…

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Fertilizing and Spraying still form the bulk of my work for our neighbours…

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Between jobs I took the time to re-evaluate my targets. I now think that my best next field will be number 23…

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…rather than field 20. It will cost €100K less and is still easily accessible. I took a look during a quiet period in late June and found a nice crop of Barley growing there…

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Fortuitously, at the same time as my crop of Oats became ready to harvest in the first week of July, so did this field of Barley and I was able to take the contract. It gave a good insight into the volume of crop I could expect compared to my field 17…

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…I took 20000 litres of Barley to the grain mill from that field and I stored nearly 8000l of Oats in my silo…

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…from my own field. I’ll be interested to see what return I get in Sorghum from field 14 when that ripens next month😎

Excitement over and back to the Fertilizing…

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…I’m amazed that this farmer wants me to fertilize so late in the crop’s growth cycle – this Sorghum is nearly ready to harvest and I fertilized mine a couple of months back! Still – it’s cash in hand and I’ve been able to add a Forage Wagon to my fleet of vehicles…

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…Which means I can collect the straw after I harvest and sell it to the Biogas Plant…

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That brings us up to date on the happenings at Ferme du Vieux Chêne 😎👍

I said in my FS22 intro post that I was going to try New Farmer mode on the Swiss map. I also showed the map and the starting equipment that a New Farmer gets. So now, I’m going to take a more in depth look centred around the first 2 day’s of in-game time play.

One of the things that wasn’t mentioned in my previous post was Cows – yes, you get 15 of those when you start as well. The cows are in a small pasture, which allows you to feed and water them…

The land around you has lots of grass that you can mow to produce Hay, so feeding them should not be a problem in the summer. Storing up some hay for winter is going to be important.

Day 1 – Late August. The day begins with watering the cows using the Bührer 6105 tractor and the Joskin tanker – seen here collecting water from the supply…

…The water costs a fortune 😦 Then it’s time to start work on mowing and drying the grass in the smaller lower field. I chose that one because the equipment that comes with the farm is very small. We can’t afford to upgrade our equipment too soon either as we only had €100000 in the bank and we’ve just spent some of that on water! We’re going to have to take care of those funds and probably do a lot of work for other farmers if we want to expand.

For the mowing, I used the Rigitrac SKE50 electric tractor with the Pöttinger cutter…

…It’s a very nippy little beast and surprisingly stable given its narrow width. Then I set about turning the grass to dry it using the Tedder…

…and then we used the windrower to make some easy to collect lines ready for the baler…

…This Pöttinger TOP342 piles the hay on the left-hand side rather than in the centre, so when working close to field boundaries, you have to think carefully about which direction to drive so that the row of hay is formed within the field rather than the hedge 😉

Now it’s time to collect the hay. I’m going to need some loose hay because I don’t have a bale-breaker. Time to introduce you to our third tractor – the Lindner Lintrac 130. The most powerful of the starting vehicles, it features all-wheel steering and has looks that would grace a sports car showroom…

…behind, we’ve got the Pöttinger Boss Alpin 251 loader wagon and once I’ve driven up and down some rows of hay…

…we have 16100 litres of the loose variety for feeding the cows in the next month or so. Then I baled the rest to store it for the autumn and winter. It will not be enough though and I will soon have to harvest the grass on the much larger field behind the farmhouse. Even then, I will probably have to supplement my stock by purchasing from the farmers store – hence the need to be careful with the money. Finally, for cows to be in the peak of condition, we should be feeding them Total Mix Ration – expensive to buy. Or I need a machine and source of hay and silage if I want to make it myself. More expense either way!

Day 2 – Early September. Today I’m going to do some work for another farmer, but first we have to water and feed the cows…

I’ve taken a job to harvest some potatoes – it’s almost an all day task but it will pay me around €11k after hire fees have been deducted. I get to drive an amazing beast…

That’s the Grimm Ventor 4150 – and it’s much too big for the roads on this map! I’m guessing that moving one of these in real life might require an escort 😉 If this was Euro Truck Simulator you’d get hooked up on a wall or barrier somewhere along the way. As it is, you can get it to the field from the dealer because Giants have sensibly made it so you can mow down signs and drive through fences. But that is at the cost of realism, which I’m not totally happy about.

The other unrealistic (but fun) thing is hiring trains and driving them to move produce. My potatoes had to go to Felsbrun – the neighbouring town – by train. It’s great fun riding along above the train enjoying the scenery…

I’ve touched briefly on a couple of realism issues here but the main issue for me is the cows. In the real world you cannot keep cows in open pasture all the year round. In summer they need to be protected from sunburn and in the winter they have to be kept out of the wind, So the start up situation on the Erlengrat map without a barn for the cows is an issue. The cheapest pasture and barn set-up is over €250k, which we don’t have the money for and I doubt can be earned before winter comes. Of course, I could turn the seasons off… A dilemma that I will ponder before the next Erlengrat post.

There will be no such concerns in France where I’ll be playing in Start from Scratch mode – see you soon 🙂