Harvest has finally begun in the Palouse. Everything is several weeks later than normal but a visit now will allow you to see the harvest in full swing. Farmers work long hours each day to get the fields cut and the seeds into storage. In addition to the cereal crops of wheat and barley, lentils are also grown and harvested in the Palouse region.
Palouse farmers generally harvest lentils by mowing and swathing, or they may combine the crop. Swathing is often necessary to kill green weeds and allow them to dry so the lentils can be threshed efficiently. Plants are usually swathed when the pods turn a cream to golden color; then older pods will be dry and their seeds firm.
The images in this blog were all taken from Steptoe Butte in eastern Washington. This high vantage point gives an almost aerial view so the many patterns and contours of the land and crops can be appreciated. Lentil harvest provides beautiful colors and patterns to enrich the landscape in this picturesque region. Visit this region and come away with some truly unique and colorful images of the harvest.