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

Driver's view: Matt Lewis’ Mzuri Pro-Til 3m drill

Farm foreman Matt Lewis talks about the Mzuri Pro-Til drill that he has owned for three years. Its purchase bought about a change in the farm's crop establishment system, which…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver’s View: Jean-Baptiste Bady’s Claydon Hybrid 3m

Estate manager Jean-Baptiste Bady and farm manager Callum Orr, who run an arable operation at the world’s most northerly castle on the small central island of Shapinsay, Orkney, have picked…

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…

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…

Cultivation and drilling reviews and tests

See all

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: 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: 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…

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: 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: 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…

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: 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…

CEREAL DRILLS

Is French-made Novag disc drill king of cover crop drilling?

French farmers are established as some of Europe’s pioneers in the brave new world of cultivation-free drilling and pre-season cover crops, so it’s no surprise that the country is home…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver’s view: Swithin Waterer's Sly Boss drill

Swithin Waterer of Halstead, Essex, explains why he opted to go no-till with a Sly Boss drill. He tells us how it has performed, what he likes best about it…

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,…

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…

Cultivation and drilling insights and practical advice

See all

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

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…

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…

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…

MACHINERY

John Deere 750A comes top in Cambridgeshire drill trial

Earlier this year we published an article about a trial being conducted by Cambridgeshire farmer David Walston, comparing three different drills to sow wheat direct into stubble – a Cross…

PLOUGHING AND CULTIVATION

Plough, min-till and no-till compared: year one

A major trial has been set up to find the most profitable and sustainable way to grow arable crops by comparing three different establishment systems over five years. Establishment systems…

CEREAL DRILLS

How to fit a fertiliser kit to a John Deere drill

John Deere’s 750A drill is recognised as being one of the longest-serving no-till seeders used in Europe today. Other smaller manufacturers from around the globe are working hard to grab…

ARABLE

Top stubble management tips to kill slugs

Cultural methods of controlling slugs have a key role to play in reducing the risk of metaldehyde slug pellets reaching water, as well as helping to cut the costs of…

EVENTS

Latest high-speed disc cultivators set to work at Tillage-Live

Designed primarily for shallow cultivation of stubbles, the short disc cultivator, has become an increasingly popular farming tool – and so the makes, models, features and options available have multiplied. Underlining their appeal,…

CULTIVATION AND DRILLING

How to crack down on costly soil compaction

Improved on-farm understanding and use of tillage equipment combined with better use of tyre technology could be key to cutting costly soil compaction. Damaged soils are estimated to cost UK…

ARABLE

Growers highlight soil and cost advantages of using no-till

There’s no silver bullet when it comes to putting no-tillage cultivation techniques into practice, but there is a basic recipe that everyone can follow. Minimal soil disturbance, diverse rotations and…

Cultivation and drilling technology

See all

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…

TECHNOLOGY

Autonomous robots drill a 50ha maize crop

Controlled by an app, a French technology company has built three highly accurate robots that are cultivating, drilling and caring for a 50ha crop of maize, completely autonomously. The project…

CULTIVATORS

Topcon launches Norac-designed tillage depth control

Norac is well known in spraying circles for its boom levelling technology and now parent company Topcon has used the same principals to dive underground and develop a tillage depth…

CEREAL DRILLS

6m disc drill ticks the boxes for contractor’s CTF system

While striving to limit the travel of machinery across arable acreages is a very worthy cause, it’s not always that practical. True controlled traffic farming (CTF) zealots will tell you…

Video

See all

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…

MACHINERY

3 Cereals videos: Top tractors, cultivation kit and sprayers

Machinery makers from across the globe flocked to Boothby Graffoe, Lincolnshire this week (10-15 June) for the annual Cereals 2015 event. We captured a few highlights from the tractor manufacturers, cultivation…

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,…

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,…