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

Ultimate Guide to buying a trailed cultivator drill combo

With a combination of cultivating discs, packer tyres, disc coulters and finishing tools, trailed cultivator drills offer a pretty broad skill set. On lighter land, sowing straight into a seed-bed…

CEREAL DRILLS

Ultimate Guide to buying a direct disc drill

For growers who prefer disc coulters for establishing new crops straight into arable stubbles or a green cover, there are plenty of options – including several newcomers – as this…

CEREAL DRILLS

Ultimate Guide to buying a direct tine drill 2022

There are a good few changes for this year’s Ultimate Guide to direct drills that use tine coulters to establish crops straight into stubbles. McConnel has dropped out of the…

PLOUGHS

On test: Kverneland's new five-furrow 2300S plough

Decades pass with little change to the humble plough, so a raft of major updates to Kverneland's mid-range models was big news for buyers keen to turn a more consistent…

CEREAL DRILLS

New hoppers and models for Horsch drills

A fresh design, new interface and larger hopper options have been rolled out across several of Horsch’s popular drill ranges. The 3m, 4m and 6m Pronto models have greater seed carrying…

Cultivation and drilling reviews and tests

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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: Tom Hounsfield's Sumo DD drill

Lincolnshire farmer Tom Hounsfield gives us his verdict on the adapted Sumo DD no-till drill he bought in 2015. He tells us why he switched to no-till, his likes and…

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: 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

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: 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…

PLOUGHS

On test: Kverneland's new five-furrow 2300S plough

Decades pass with little change to the humble plough, so a raft of major updates to Kverneland's mid-range models was big news for buyers keen to turn a more consistent…

CEREAL DRILLS

Driver’s view: Lionel Shaw's Horsch Avatar drill

Lionel Shaw runs a Horsch Avatar at Manor Farm, Luton, and explains his why he changed to a no-till drill, how it works and gives us his verdict on the…

PLOUGHS

Six-furrow plough round-up: Specs and prices

If you thought the UK plough market was limited to a handful of well-known brands, think again. We suss out six-furrow offerings from 11 makers. For an implement that took…

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…

MACHINERY

Maize drills - what's on the market

The tediously slow job that used to be drilling maize is being transformed by a new generation of machines that work with precision at much faster speeds. Peter Hill reports…

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.…

Cultivation and drilling insights and practical advice

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ARABLE

Many UK growers missing out on the benefits of zero tillage

Only 3% of the UK arable area is farmed using Conservation Agriculture (zero tillage), much lower than other parts of the world. Anthony Pope argues why more farmers should consider…

CEREAL DRILLS

Ultimate guide to buying a min-till drill 2021

Our latest Ultimate Guide focuses on direct, min-till and disc cultivator drills, with the listings providing a snapshot of every make, model and variation in terms of format, specification and retail…

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…

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…

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…

PLOUGHING AND CULTIVATION

How a new soil scoring tool picks the best cultivation option

A new crop establishment tool which assesses a range of soil management factors is set to help farmers identify whether a change in cultivation may benefit their soils. There is…

TECHNOLOGY

Aqua Till waterjets offer ingenious alternative to coulters

Just when you thought variable rate, variable depth, turn compensation and limitless fertiliser combinations had taken drilling technology to its limit, the rule book has been blasted open once again.…

CEREAL DRILLS

Ultimate Guide to buying a trailed cultivator drill combo

With a combination of cultivating discs, packer tyres, disc coulters and finishing tools, trailed cultivator drills offer a pretty broad skill set. On lighter land, sowing straight into a seed-bed…

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…

ROLLS

12m Cambridge rolls buyers guide: Options and prices

Crop establishment trends might come and go, but whatever the cultivation or drilling regime, there’s almost always a role for the humble Cambridge roll. Beyond the usual seed-bed consolidation tasks,…

CEREAL DRILLS

12 power-harrow combi drill options with 3m working width

Its ability to create a decent seed-bed in almost any soil conditions and cultivation regime has helped keep the venerable combination drill at the sharp end of manufacturers’ sales charts.…

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 technology

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CULTIVATORS

Garford improves spec of super-accurate Robocrop guidance

Garford has launched the latest version of its super-accurate camera-based Robocrop guidance system. Now in its fourth generation, the kit comes with a compact touchscreen to speed up the process…

CULTIVATORS

Case-IH introduces AFS Soil Command for cultivator

An automatic control system designed to ensure consistent performance from multi-element cultivators has been introduced by Case-IH in North America to help improve seedbed quality. See also: Tips on selecting…

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…

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…

Video

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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…

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…

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,…