Know How / Drilling

Get guidance on the right conditions for drilling for successful crop establishment.  See the pros and cons of different establishment techniques, including min till and direct drilling, how to get good seed to soil contact for rapid establishment and how to cover off early weed and pest threats.

Advice and tips

ESTABLISHMENT

How to carry out a pre-season check on a StocksAg seeder

It wasn’t long ago that the little applicator was a slug pellet only machine, but in recent years it has gained a new lease of life as a second seed…

ESTABLISHMENT

Practical tips for growers sticking with oilseed rape

Farmers reluctant to grow oilseed rape again after a terrible year for establishment are being offered plenty of advice and incentives to stick with the crop ahead of the new…

BARLEY

Tips on getting high spring barley yields in a tough season

Late drilling, followed by a hot, dry summer, meant spring cereal crops struggled on many farms in 2018, although some spring barley growers managed to deliver yields exceeding 8t/ha. A…

ARABLE

New advice on how to raise spring oat yields

Much-needed trials work on spring oats has revealed how farmers can get even more yield from the crop, including a 0.6t/ha lift by simply tweaking fertiliser applications. Last year was…

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Case studies

SOILS

Three Canadian farmers reveal their secrets to soil health

Heavy soils, late harvested crops like soya and a yearly rainfall exceeding 1,000mm is the perfect combination for compaction, which is why southern Ontario farmers focus so much on soil…

PEST MANAGEMENT

Grower's precision drill helps counter flea beetle threat

Wiltshire grower Martin Smart has invested in a new precision drill to give his oilseed rape a head start after on-farm trials showed that direct drilling helped his crops survive…

DRILLING

Grower makes direct drilling work on the west coast

Being prepared to take a step backwards has allowed Merseyside grower Olly Harrison to make the transition to no-till despite farming on the west coast. Mr Harrison, who farms on…

OILSEED RAPE

How top oilseed rape growers achieve high yields

Two leading Scottish Borders oilseed rape growers’ focus on crop establishment and nutrition has led them to push their average farm yields towards the 5t/ha barrier. David Fuller manages 650ha…

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Insights

DRILLING

Video: High-pressure water tech aids direct drilling success

Replacing drill coulters with a high-pressure jet to open up the soil will not only improve germination, its inventors believe it can aid rooting by cracking compaction and aerating soils.…

ESTABLISHMENT

On-farm establishment trial shows best system in a dry year

Dry conditions for the second year in a row have highlighted the importance of establishment method. Systems which allowed crops to get their roots down in search of moisture were…

ESTABLISHMENT

Smart drill add-on offers real-time variable applications

A clever gadget that provides planter operators with real-time soil data for on-the-fly variable-rate seed and fertiliser applications could soon feature on UK farms after a recent Agco acquisition. Illinois-based…

MAIZE

Why drilling maize deeper and later could be future trend

Drilling maize later and up to depths of 7cm could be a useful strategy in light of two likely seed treatment reviews. Maize growers are preparing in earnest for the…

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News

SOILS

Soil mapping is set to get more accurate and detailed

Soil nutrient mapping is set to get a lot more accurate and detailed as the scanning technology used for detecting minerals from the air in Canada is being adapted for…

WEED MANAGEMENT

First signs of resistance found to key herbicide flufenacet

The first signs of ryegrass and blackgrass resistance to the widely used used herbicide flufenacet are being detected, with growers being urged to use other methods of control as well…

DRILLING

Onion drilling makes an early start in Suffolk

Onion drilling made an early start on one large light land Suffolk estate in excellent conditions. This bodes well for a good crop on a farm that produces 6-7% of…

DRILLING

Farmers capitalise on dry weather as the drills come out

A dry, mild winter has resulted in ideal conditions for drilling on some soils and arable farmers are not wasting the opportunity get their beans and barley in the ground…

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Test and reviews

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's View: Steve Heard's John Deere 750A drill

Leicestershire farmer Steve Heard imported and assembled his own John Deere no-till drill – he gives us his verdict on how it has performed, what he most likes about it…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver’s view: Sky Easy Drill

Cambridgeshire grower Edward Davison picks out the best and worst points of his Sky Easy Drill, which he bought in 2016 when his crop yields were hammered by a high…

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Video

DRILLING

Video: High-pressure water tech aids direct drilling success

Replacing drill coulters with a high-pressure jet to open up the soil will not only improve germination, its inventors believe it can aid rooting by cracking compaction and aerating soils.…

DRILLING

Video: Min-till drill-off the highlight of Cereals 2018

Cereals show-goers were treated to a drill-off at this year’s event, giving them chance to see how five different low soil-disturbance systems deal with the challenge of a cover crop.…

HARVEST

Video: Drilling OSR companion crop follows early wheat harvest

Drilling a companion crop is the order of the day for Cambridgeshire grower David White as soon as early-maturing winter wheat is cut on his light soils. He is sowing…

ESTABLISHMENT

9 amazing grower videos to celebrate spring drilling

Spring drilling and potato planting is progressing well across the country, as soil temperatures climb and drier weather helps growers get on heavier land. It isn't all work and no fun,…

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