Around the Home and Farm


Letter of instruction

By Jerry Mahan



Submitted photo Chris Bruynis Ag. Ext. Educator Ross County and Barry Ward OSU Ext. Production Business Management in OSU Ext. during the” Ask the Expert” session at 2018 Farm Science Review.

Submitted photo Chris Bruynis Ag. Ext. Educator Ross County and Barry Ward OSU Ext. Production Business Management in OSU Ext. during the” Ask the Expert” session at 2018 Farm Science Review.


I recently had the opportunity to share thoughts to the class on estate planning titled It’s My Money, My Stuff and My Life sponsored by the Greene County Council on Aging. One of the points of my presentation dealt with completing a “Letter of Instruction.”

This “ letter ”is really a detailed listing of assets and liabilities, names and addresses of family and those named in your will ,attorney’s name and address, insurance companies you hold a policy with, location of important papers, credit card and savings accounts and location of cemetery plots among others.

This “Letter” is not a legal document but it can be worth a lot to an executor of an estate or power of attorney in handling your financial matters in times of sickness. It also can save you money in having a lot of needed information which you might have to pay an attorney to gather if this document does not exist. Improperly handled or shared it can be a liability as it contains a lot of personal information as well and someone could do a lot of financial damage to an estate or a person’s financial holdings.

If you would like an electronic copy mailed to you send your request to me at mahan.2@att.net or if you do not have access to email call me at 937-372-5711.

With the harvest of corn and soybeans in progress comes the opportunity to renegotiate farm leases. After hearing several speakers from Purdue Univ. and OSU at this year’s Farm Science Review who shared their outlook on the financial aspect of agriculture for 2019 it is obvious farmers are in challenging financial times.

While we will have good yields of corn and soybeans the prices of both will continue to be a problem. Trade barriers, over supply and competition with other countries in agricultural commodities will make marketing the crop difficult when the goal is to sell at a price above cost of production. Thus many producers are storing a lot of the crop not already sold on the farm for sale at a later date with hopefully higher prices.

One good source of information in dealing with developing production crop budgets for 2019 as well as coming up with a realistic figure for farm cash rent are the OSU Ext. crop budgets. They show the best estimates on expected cost of production, income and possible cash rent in relation to yields.

One important part of these budgets is you can plug in your own figures as they relate to costs or income. They can be found on line at: http://farmoffice.osu.edu. Look under “Farm Management Tools” for information on crop budgets and cash rent. Also you might find useful information under “Ag Law Library” for fact sheets on topics like Line fence Law, Oil and Gas Law, Zoning Law and Ponds and Legal Liability in Ohio for starters.

Noxious weeds

The list of Noxious Weeds in Ohio just had a major series of changes by the Ohio Dept. of Agriculture. These weeds are “plants that can injure agricultural crops and livestock due to their invasiveness, toxicity and other harmful characteristics which can harm people and ecosystems.”

This list is important for several reasons including the need to control these weeds on public lands and weeds growing on private property by land owners, township trustees, municipalities and counties. Several weeds (13) were added to the list and three were removed (wild carrot, Oxeye Daisy and Wild Mustard).For more details on this list go to: http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/901%3A5-37. For additional info look at the OSU fact sheet titled “Ohio’s Noxious Weed Laws “as listed above in the Farm Office website under “Ag Law Library” fact sheets.

They want in

It is not too late to fix door sweeps and caulk around windows and doors as well as anywhere pipes or wiring enters the house to help prevent insects, spiders, mice and other critters from entering your home. Do not forget the soffit area for repair as well as fixing screens to prevent stink bugs, beetles and birds from entering the attic area. They want the protection and warmth of your home this winter.

PERFECT Time of Year

We often think of this time of year to” put things to bed” in the landscape and on the farm but in reality many things need to be done now to avoid problems next year. Now is the time to spray with a herbicide (weed killer) those biennial weeds (poison hemlock); perennial ones like dandelion, creeping Charlie, Mouseear Chickweed, Broadleaf Plantain, Wild Strawberry, Poison-Ivy, and many types of thistle among others.

Check closely the label of any weed killers used to learn of application procedures and safety precautions. Apply before we get into freezing conditions when the plants go into a type of growth slowdown usually in early Dec. Plants treated now may not show symptoms of being killed but if properly treated will be gone next spring.

Submitted photo Chris Bruynis Ag. Ext. Educator Ross County and Barry Ward OSU Ext. Production Business Management in OSU Ext. during the” Ask the Expert” session at 2018 Farm Science Review.
https://www.xeniagazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/32/2018/10/web1_ChrisBruynisBarryWard.jpgSubmitted photo Chris Bruynis Ag. Ext. Educator Ross County and Barry Ward OSU Ext. Production Business Management in OSU Ext. during the” Ask the Expert” session at 2018 Farm Science Review.
Letter of instruction

By Jerry Mahan

Jerry Mahan is a retired agriculture educator and can be reached by email at mahan.2@att.net.

Jerry Mahan is a retired agriculture educator and can be reached by email at mahan.2@att.net.