On Farm Bio-Fuel Cropping Systems Luke Holst Holst Farms Augusta, IL
Holst Farms In 2010 1300 acres cornAugusta 1200 acres soybeans* 160 wheat/sunflower 100 acres alfalfa. 100 and 150 brood cows lots of hogs 300 pounds of tomatoes/week (peak production)
Bio-Diesel Production on Holst Farms• Holst Farms has been producing bio-fuel on-farm for four years.• Hybrid sunflowers are grown and processed on the farm.• A blend of vegetable oil, gasoline and conventional diesel fuel is used in farm equipment
Cropping Systems• Wheat-Sunflower double crop – winter wheat is planted in the fall and followed by a sunflower crop – Sunflowers are planted in late June to early July – Sunflowers are harvested in late November• Canola-Sunflower double crop – A new crop rotation is being researched
Winter Wheat Field in Early Spring A proven double-crop system in W. Illinois Sunflower Field in early September Much more reliable than double crop soybeans
Wheat-Sunflower System– Sunflowers • Conventional plan uses 90 lbs of N and 50 lbs of DAP per acre. • On Holst Farms incorporated swine manure is usually used instead of fertilizer. • “Spartan” broadleaf herbicide and “Select” grass herbicide is applied before planting– Wheat • Fall applied Urea, DAP, Potash • Spring applied Fungicide and Nitrogen
Sunflower Yields• Over the last three growing seasons Holst Farms has averaged 40 bu per acre for sunflowers - some fields have averaged over 50 bu per acre• Oil yield has been between 1.5 and 1.75 gallons per bushel.
The future??? Canola-Sunflower Double Crop System• In fall 2009, Holst Farms and the IIRA: VASDC planted a canola trial IIRA:VASDC = Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs: Value- Added Sustainable Development Center, http://www.value- added.org/
2009/10 Canola plot: 3 varieties“Flash” , “Wichita” and “Dekalb”
Canola-Sunflower Double Crop• For the 2010-2011 growing season Holst Farms and IIRA VSDC have planned to test a winter Canola crop followed by a sunflower crop. If successful this should greatly increase oil yield per acre.• > 200 gallons per acre??• < 3% of crop land dedicated to fuel production
Blending• 1 part gasoline : 6 parts sunflower oil is the Holst’s standard blend• Gasoline is added to achieve the same specific gravity as diesel fuel• The amount of gasoline is small enough that no adverse effects have been noticed on engines.• The oil-gasoline blend is mixed with diesel (approximately 50/50 mix) before use in farm equipment.
Sunflower presscake retains ~ 20%of the oil.Press cake is fedto cattle
Sunflower oilsludge is one of the materials burned to heat the Holst’s greenhouses