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

WORKSHOP SKILLS

Inventions Comp 2021: Craig Peddie’s high-speed Seedtilla

Craig Peddie’s Seedtilla The 5m hydraulic folding Seedtilla is Craig Peddie’s answer to high-speed shallow cultivations. Built during the spring lockdown to fill the void of his drastically curtailed social…

CEREAL DRILLS

Vaderstad releases new 4m Spirit drill

A 4m version of the popular Spirit has been added to Vaderstad’s drill range. The Spirit 400C/S gets an iPad-based E-Control system to adjust working depth and application rate while…

CULTIVATORS

KV adds wider models to Enduro cultivator range

Kverneland has bulked out its Enduro compact tine cultivator range with the addition of three hydraulic folding models that join the existing 3m and 3.5m fixed-frame versions. The new format…

CULTIVATION AND DRILLING

Kult range extends Opico’s mechanical weeding options

Opico has widened its mechanical weed control line-up to include a new range of hoes from German firm Kult. The Lincolnshire-based importer only added Hatzenbichler’s inter-row cultivators and comb harrows…

CEREAL DRILLS

Pottinger makes tweaks to Terrasem and Aerosem drills

Pottinger has tweaked the format of its two popular drill models to make them suitable for a broader range of establishment methods. The high-output Terrasem is now available in a…

Cultivation and drilling reviews and tests

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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: 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: 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.…

MACHINERY

Fertiliser drills: What are the options?

Why seed & fert? Power harrow drills Solo drills Disc & tine cultivation The technique of placing fertiliser at drilling time is moving out of its traditional stronghold in Scotland…

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…

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…

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…

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: 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…

MACHINERY

Combination drill buyer's guide

Combination drills Host implements Buyer's Guide Min-till, strip-till and no-till may be all the rage but the once ubiquitous combination of power harrow and piggy-back seeder still retains a place…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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,…

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…

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…

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…

Cultivation and drilling technology

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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…

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…

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…

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…

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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,…

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…

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…