28 October 2019
My weekly drive to the local Target takes me past cornfields and soybean fields. This time of year I'm always fascinated to see how the harvest is done, with equipment that not only reaps the beans and corn, but mulches the stubble and spreads it back on the field. In my grandfather's time the broken cornstalks would have been left standing through the winter, then plowed under during the spring cultivation. Not much cover left nowadays for pheasants and other wildlife.
One of the Photos of the Week in the recent Atlantic was this image taken in a Chinese sorghum field:
The same essential process - "harvesters, stubble choppers, and soil preparation machines" - deployed on an industrial scale.