Agritechnica 2019: Ploeger self-propelled merger

Ploeger SP merger

© Jonathan Page

Mergers are becoming a popular way of reducing contamination while grouping swathes of grass, but Dutch firm Ploeger has taken taken things to the extreme by building a self-propelled model with a €275,000 (£236,700) list price.

It carries two 5m fixed rotor pickup reels sourced from Reiter, which flick the grass onto two conveyors that can work together or in opposite directions.

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Cleverly, the beds can lay the grass rows to the side or centrally, which means there is the option of grouping 6m, 12m or 22m of grass into one swath.

One of its key selling points is that it doesn’t drive on the crop before it forms the rows, unlike a rake, so it doesn’t have to work deep to lift compacted grass out of wheelings. Getting into corners and working along headlands is also easier as tiny steering tweaks from the rear steering wheels are noticed immediately at the pickup.

The machine is powered by a 250hp six-cylinder FPT engine and the transmission is hydrostatic. The rear axle has 600mm lateral adjustment so turning circles in the field can be increased, too.