Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Garbanzo Beans from our Local Farms to Your Table

As I've mentioned before, our crops are our paycheck and everyone breathes a collective sigh of relief when the crops are cut and in the warehouse.  So last last Saturday, when Farmer friends Ron Hermann and his son, Ryan called to ask if we would help them get their final field of garbanzo beans cut before the rain came, we didn't hesitate a bit.  Here's a final look at a garbanzo harvest.
Most farmers in our area have semi trucks to haul their crops to the warehouse

Ryan talking on his cell phone while waiting for his
semi to get filled with the beans

A close up view of what a garbanzo plant looks like in the field

The pods contain a garbanzo bean

The short video below is when I arrived out in the field and filmed Farmer Jay's combine close to the road and was waiting for Farmer Joe to come so I could hitch a ride. =)    (it was breezy out so pardon the noisy video background noise)

Farmer Joe says:

Filling up one of the semi trucks

Very dusty 
Here is a video of what it looks and sounds like when the dried garbs are coming into the bulk tank of the combine.  Sort of sounds like marbles hitting the glass.

A view of the hilly kind of  fields that are common in N. Idaho
To give you a view of how steep some of the hillside are..... I can tell you, driving a combine or a tractor on a steep hillside is scary, so good thing our farmers are brave.

One more video of the auger loading the semi trucks

Just one more view of the plants going into the reel on the header on the video below.  Legume crops are not tall plants, so the header on the combine is really close to the ground.   Sometimes the header will pick up a rock from the field and that is not a good thing as it can (usually) breaks something.  Although this was not the case in the Hermann's field, but we are always on the look out for foreign objects that the farmer doesn't want to come across (It is dusty out there and sometimes it is unavoidable).   In one or two of our fields, we have "rock patches"  and each spring the farm crew will go out into the field and "pick rocks" so come harvest, the header doesn't come across a rock or two.

And here my friends, is what dried, newly harvested garbanzo beans look like.

And lastly, as an added bonus, our friends at the Pea & Lentil Council sent me a short video of a combine harvesting lentils to share with you as well,  .

So now the Anderson combines have had their oil changed, the dust has been blown off of them, they have been washed and put away for the season.  I hope you have enjoyed seeing what harvest time looks like for an American Farmer on the "Palouse" as our region is known as.   In the next week we will be getting the fields ready for Fall planting of the winter wheat.  So more to come.

As always, thanks for stopping by and feel free to email me at or leave me a post, I love comments.  Thanks and all my best, Gayle


  1. Great post! I love seeing the landscapes and the farm machinery at work. As for picking up rocks...oh, yeah...did lots of that when I was kid growing up on the farm.

  2. Gayle:
    Your intention to put a face on the family farm and show others exactly where our food comes from is more than fulfilled by each one of your posts - I believe you are doing a great service in educating all of us about the many sides of life on the farm. I was already appreciative of the fact that our food comes to us via human dedication, toil, devotion and a lot of work just from having visited farms in my childhood (now part of ancient history :-) but I feel closer to the experience through your blog than I ever did during actual visits.
    Sign me a fan of the AgraDiva!

  3. Hi Jeanelle & Wayne!
    Thanks for the great comments on the blog. Definately makes my day. =)