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

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…

CEREAL DRILLS

Bespoke liquid fert kits improve no-till drilled crops

A wind of change is sweeping through UK crop establishment practices, with more and more growers being lured into splashing the cash on a no-till drill. With this increased uptake…

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…

MAIZE DRILLS

Horsch Maestro drill gets new precision metering system

An overpressure metering system, badged Airspeed, has joined the spec list of Horsch's latest Maestro precision drill models. This gives buyers a choice of singulation setups across the range, with…

Cultivation and drilling reviews and tests

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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…

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: 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: 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…

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: 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…

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: 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: 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: 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…

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: 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…

Cultivation and drilling insights and practical advice

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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…

SOILS

Tips on getting soils and rotations back on track

After one of the wettest winters on record, it could be assumed that UK arable soils will be in desperate need of first aid before the next cropping season begins.…

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…

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…

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

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…

TECHNOLOGY

How moisture-seeking drilling kit helps drought-hit Aussies

A new drilling outfit developed in Australia is using clever moisture-sensing tines to automatically alter sowing depth according to soil conditions. Moisture Planting Technologies (MPT), based in New South Wales,…

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…

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…

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…

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 technology

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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…

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…

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…

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…

Video

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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…

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…

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,…