German company Vogelsang is best known in the UK for its slurry macerators, however the arrival of its slurry strip-till system takes it into new territory.
The XTill is aimed chiefly at farmers and contractors drilling maize, though it could work for sugar beet and other root crops too. Instead of spreading the slurry across the full width of the machine and cultivating it in, the XTill puts it in 20-25cm cultivated strips leaving undisturbed soil between.
The 6m, eight-row unit working at Tillage-Live goes on the back of a slurry tanker and weighs in at a relatively modest 2.5t. Each unit consists of a cutting disc for getting accurate depth, followed by an angled star wheel to clear trash. Then slurry is piped down the back of a coulter, then notched discs refill the slot and finally press wheels firm it down.
Slurry can be applied at depths from 10-25cm, putting it in just the right place for the following GPS-equipped drill to sow maize seed at 4-5cm just above it. The benefits are reduced hp requirement, less loss of soil moisture and a good nutritional start for the fledgling crop. Cost of this unit is roughly £38,000.
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