Know How / Cultivation and drilling

News and user views on the latest cultivation techniques to optimise crop establishment, minimise environmental impact, improve soils and reduce costs through direct drilling, minimum tillage, conservation tillage – as well as traditional ploughing and drilling techniques.

Latest cultivation and drilling articles

CEREAL DRILLS

Retrofit openers offer drill customisation on a budget

An increasing number of farmers are swapping their manufacturer-supplied drill openers for retrofit replacements in a bid to reduce soil disturbance and improve seed establishment. Switching to aftermarket openers isn’t…

CEREAL DRILLS

Bespoke Stripcat drill expands companion cropping options

In their quest to improve soil health and better adapt to changeable conditions, Lincolnshire growers Matthew and Richard Fisher have invested in an elaborate custom-built strip-till drill. The impressive rig…

CULTIVATORS

Custom-built cultivators offers money-saving alternative

The cultivator market is awash with options to suit most tastes and budgets, but despite the plethora of choice there’s often a compromise when making the final decision. The angle…

CEREAL DRILLS

Low-disturbance discs add to KV U-Drill options

Kverneland has added a low-disturbance disc combination to its U-Drill for growers looking to minimise soil movement. The MD Disc offers an alternative to the firm’s short disc harrow and…

CULTIVATORS

Side-shift linkage options deliver pinpoint crop weeding

Razor-sharp RTK guidance systems have nailed the art of driving tractors in arrow-straight lines, but they can’t deal with the inevitable wandering of implements on undulating ground and in changeable…

Cultivation and drilling reviews and tests

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TILLAGE-LIVE

Tillage-Live's top cultivators and drills put to the test

Visitors to last week’s Tillage-Live event were treated to another September scorcher as the mercury touched 30C at Monks Kirby, Warwickshire. Here Farmers Weekly’s Machinery team presents some of the latest cultivators, drills…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's view: Robert Hinchcliffe’s Triton drill

We asked Yorkshire farmer Robert Hinchcliffe to run through the good points and bad points of his 3m-wide Triton drill and explain why he picked it.  What drill are you…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's view: John Hawkins' Simtech T-Sem drill

Simtech’s T-Sem no-till drill uses a disc and inverted T-shaped coulter to establish a crop without the need for any prior cultivation. We visit Dorset farmer John Hawkins to see…

CULTIVATION AND DRILLING

Driver's view: Jack Tooley's McConnel Seedaerator

McConnel’s Seedaerator is a single-pass strip-till dril that cultivates and seeds the crop in bands. Nottinghamshire farmer Jack Tooley talks us though the highs and lows of his machine. What…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's view: Simon and David Fellows' Dale Eco XL drill

Worcestershire farmers Simon and David Fellows explain why they opted for Dale’s 10m Eco XL drill and how it fits into their controlled-traffic system. What drill are you using? We’ve…

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…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver’s view: David Bird's Primewest Cross Slot

Suffolk grower David Bird gives his verdict on the performance of the Primewest Cross Slot no-till drill. Find out how it works, its good points and what could be improved.…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's view: James Grandy's Amazone drill

Yorkshire farmer James Grandy runs through the good and bad points of his Amazone Cayena drill and how it has slotted into his establishment system. What drill are you using?…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's View: Weaving GD drill

Henry Muntz reveals how his Weaving GD no-till drill has performed across his farm of Warwickshire clay loam. What drill are you using? We’ve got a 4.8m trailed Weaving GD…

MACHINERY

12 no-till drills on show at farmer-organised demo day

Reduced-tillage drilling continues to gain popularity as farmers look for new ways to improve soil structure and reduce cultivation activity during the autumn. With that in mind, hundreds of growers headed…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver's view: John Mair's Ma/Ag SSP drill

John Mair from March, Cambridgeshire, gives us the low down on his Ma/Ag no-till drill. He reveals the benefits to soil and cost, tells us how it has performed, and…

PLOUGHS

Video: On test - Hubert's seven-furrow plough

Late last year, Suffolk firm Agri-Hire agreed a deal to take on Dowdeswell’s engineering operation with a commitment to restarting plough production on a national scale. Dowdeswell folded last summer,…

Cultivation and drilling insights and practical advice

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MACHINERY

Video: Autumn drilling season captured from the skies

After the success of last year’s harvest drone video we have been out with the cameras again, capturing autumn work in all its glory, from above. Our drones have flown over…

TECHNOLOGY

Video: Low-cost tool offers alternative to post-harvest spraying

A novel Aussie-designed mechanical weed-seeking tool is set to go into commercial production this year, offering growers a non-chemical, less weather-dependent alternative to pricey stubble spraying regimes. The Weed Chipper…

ARABLE

Effect of cultivation method on crop yields

There are many ways to cultivate a field, ranging from deep ploughing to no-till farming, and choosing the right variety and cultivation technique combination is the key to getting the…

BLACKGRASS

Why farmers should tailor blackgrass strategies to dormancy

Trials being carried out at a blackgrass research site in Cambridgeshire show that farmers can gain extra control of blackgrass with their integrated approach by taking seed dormancy results into…

CULTIVATORS

6 ways to improve autumn soil cultivation regimes

Many operators can be guilty of pulling the cultivator out the shed, heading to the field and cracking on with ground work, with the only parameter of success the sight…

SOILS

How to raise headland yields by cutting soil compaction risk

Yields on field headlands are typically 10% lower than the rest of the field, which is why farmers will benefit from measures that minimise the impact of increased traffic on…

SOILS

Top tips to achieve more resilient and sustainable soils

One of the most common questions for farmers relating to “soil health” is how best to measure it and monitor progress once they have embarked on a mission to improve…

CEREAL DRILLS

Spanish-made Virkar Dynamic adds to no-till drill options

The continued concerns over the future of key chemicals and the knock-on effect for those operating zero-tillage systems seem to have done little to stifle the direct drill market, with…

CULTIVATORS

How, why and when to mole drain

Soggy fields, ruts deeper than your wellies and bubbling water from broken drains are all telltale signs your field drainage could do with a boost. It’s only in a wet…

Refurbed farm machinery could save you money

Got an old Kuhn power harrow sat out among the stingers? Oliver Mark knows a man that can get it running sweetly and looking smart again, and it’ll cost less…

CULTIVATORS

Side-shift linkage options deliver pinpoint crop weeding

Razor-sharp RTK guidance systems have nailed the art of driving tractors in arrow-straight lines, but they can’t deal with the inevitable wandering of implements on undulating ground and in changeable…

Cultivation and drilling technology

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CULTIVATORS

Side-shift linkage options deliver pinpoint crop weeding

Razor-sharp RTK guidance systems have nailed the art of driving tractors in arrow-straight lines, but they can’t deal with the inevitable wandering of implements on undulating ground and in changeable…

Farmer embraces data to improve crop management

After dipping his toe into precision farming just over three years ago, James Porter is now embracing the latest technology that can help optimise crop inputs and ultimately increase his…

ARABLE

Yorks farmer slashes fuel costs with variable-depth tillage

A more streamlined approach to "prescription cultivation" is promised with the introduction of a tractor-mounted scanner that enables variations in soil type and compaction depth to be identified on the…

PEST MANAGEMENT

How a grower uses cultivations and tech to kill slugs

Slugs have been a major headache for North Yorkshire grower Graham Potter since he switched from a plough-based crop establishment system to direct drilling. But with proactive implementation of integrated…

Video

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MACHINERY

Video: Autumn drilling season captured from the skies

After the success of last year’s harvest drone video we have been out with the cameras again, capturing autumn work in all its glory, from above. Our drones have flown over…

PLOUGHS

Video: On test - Hubert's seven-furrow plough

Late last year, Suffolk firm Agri-Hire agreed a deal to take on Dowdeswell’s engineering operation with a commitment to restarting plough production on a national scale. Dowdeswell folded last summer,…

CEREALS

Video: Machinery highlights from Cereals 2018

The Farmers Weekly machinery team headed to the southern site for the annual Cereals show, this year at Chrishall Grange in Cambridgeshire. Although several machinery manufacturers scaled back their stands,…

CULTIVATION AND DRILLING

Video: Horsch reveal drilling innovations and tillage tweaks

German implement maker Horsch is experiencing strong UK sales from its tillage and crop protection machines. However, with the uncertainty surrounding glyphosate regulation and Brexit, the company thinks that exploring…