Casey Krush, 32
2nd Generation Farmer

Hometown: Wilton, ND, pop. 900
Family: Wife Amy, daughter Kaymbree 18 mo.
Crops: Durum Wheat, Corn, Pinto Beans
Acres: 6,000
Community Involvement: Wilton Farmers Union Elevator Board

Left to Right:  Corey Crush, LuWayne Krush, Casey Krush.

What intrigues Casey Krush the most about farming is the start to finish process of getting the land in shape for growing healthy crops.  Krush says it takes about two years and a lot of manual and mental labor to get a raw piece of ground up and going.

“You have to clean up the weeds and rocks,” Krush said.  “You have to oftentimes level the ground to get it in shape for the machinery. Then there is optimizing fertility by soil sampling; it got to be a lot more science and chemistry than I had previously known, and it is really interesting.”

Part of that mental labor is knowing when to change the rules you’ve always followed.

“We are farming better now with newer practices; we’re no longer doing a lot of tillage because where I live water is our major limitation,” Krush said. “Heat is also an issue for us so we have to be smart about timing. We are so far north that if we have a cool spring we have to turn the soil black because obviously the sun is going to warm up black soil faster; but we do that minimally and go as shallow as we can to preserve as much moisture as possible.  We try our best to take as much of the risk out of farming as we can.”

Krush gives a lot of credit to his agronomist, Jamie, with helping him reduce those risks.

“The mechanical side of farming is all my dad but all the science I’ve learned comes from Jamie,” Krush said. “He has really worked hard to keep us on the cutting edge of things. He goes to all the different trainings and seminars so we don’t have to take time away from the farm.  He shares all of his information with us and tries to point us in the right direction. I have had an excellent relationship with him ever since I have taken over the day-to-day decision making.”

Krush says finding and using the resources around him, like Jamie, makes good business sense.

“He can answer any question I have and if he can’t, he calls someone who can,” Krush said.  “He is not out to just sell, sell, sell…  I mean, obviously he wants my business because if I fail, he fails.  Overall it’s just been really good to learn from him.”

Krush hopes the Rose Parade is an opportunity for the general public to learn more about farmers from the ones who are actually providing food for the masses.

“This is great,” said Krush.  “We need to see if we can try to turn a head or two; with the majority of people living in urban areas now they don’t get to see what goes on in the country. They have no clue how much work and effort goes into getting their food into the grocery store and how it has to be a true passion to do this work.  It is not always fun; we have bad years along with the good. But like Jamie has always said, ‘Farming is a legacy.  It is not just this year or next year; it is what you build over time…’  And you know, we take a lot of pride in that.”