As farmers around the country evaluate young plants at emergence, it is also the perfect time to judge whether or not their planters performed up to expectations.
“Farmers only get 30 to 40 opportunities to plant in their entire career,” said Mark Hanna, extension agricultural engineer with Iowa State University. “Farmers can benefit from taking a step back and evaluating how effective their planting was to make changes for next year.”Driven by pressure from higher costs, farmers expect more return than ever on their investment in seed. A consistently accurate planter plays a vital role in farmers’ ability to see their return become a reality.
Plant emergence can reveal poor planter performance in several ways, including: Read the rest of this entry »
Sunflower® is expanding its tillage offering to include the new 6650-48 vertical tillage tool as part of the 6600 Series, along with two larger split-wing disc harrows from the 1436 Series. The 6650-48 provides farmers with a class-leading, true working width of 47ft, 11 inches. The new split-wing 1436SW models provide 600 pounds-per-foot of residue-cutting weight for tough residue management operations.
“Sunflower® is excited to offer the 6650-48 vertical tillage tool to today’s conservation-minded farmers,” says Larry Kuster, AGCO senior marketing specialist for tillage. “It provides a significant boost in productivity by harnessing the potential of high-horsepower tractors with the ability to cover more than 38 acres an hour.”
- Sunflower Saber Blades™, combined with proven staggered offset gang design in a large-width, five-section 6×6-inch frame, provide superior performance in the field, all while folding to transport dimensions of 18 feet, 2 inches wide and 13 feet, 11 inches high.
- The blade design and 18-degree offset gang angle of Sunflower vertical tillage tools provide optimum performance in cutting and sizing crop residue. The residue left behind by these tools creates a surface that is resistant to wind and water erosion.
- The frame features thicker-wall 6×6-inch tubing (3/8-inch thick in high-stress areas) for a stronger, heavier frame, and is cross-braced and gusseted for added strength and maintenance-free service.
- The 6650-48 rides on a patented walking triple design, which uses two walking-beam pivot points to create a series of walking tandem wheels.
Manufacturers are switching their focus from moisture conservation implements to full-tilt tillage tools as waterlogged fields become the muddy new norm rather than the exception.
In response to farmer demand, Sunflower introduced two new implements in September: the 6650-48 vertical tillage tool and two split-wing 1436 disc harrows.
Dennis Lewallen, chief engineer on both cultivator projects, said there are valid reasons why farmers are adding tillage implements to their equipment lineups.
The bottom line is that zero tillage has inadvertently created four distinct problems for farmers that only tillage can fix:
“More weeds are becoming resistant to chemicals, so some form of tillage is necessary.”
Weed specialists in the northern Great Plains states and across the prairie provinces are nearly unanimous in their belief that glyphosate was too easy to use and farmers came to rely on it too much. Herbicide resistance is the ugly result.
Many regions have had almost a decade of above-average rainfall, but some farmers are still adjusting to the idea that they should do everything possible to conserve soil moisture. Those waterlogged fields need tillage to dry the soil.
Tire ruts have become another big factor because of the mud, and tire ruts don’t take care of themselves.
However, it’s not only muddy conditions that call for surface tillage. Depending on soil type, long-term zero till fields can develop a rough surface that’s hard on sprayers and combines.
Many zero-till producers are beginning to realize that the frost they once figured would break up soil compaction isn’t doing the bang-up job they assumed it would.
Read the full article on The Western Producer.
The RG700 is among top products nominated by readers of No-Till Farmer magazine for Product of the Year. Voting is open for growers only through Saturday, November 8, in 13 different categories, including Category 9-Spraying Equipment. Multiple products can be cast within each product category.
Visit http://www.no-tillfarmer.com/pages/Vote-Now-Open-For-No-Till-Product-Of-The-Year.php to learn more and cast your vote for your favorite products. You could be one of 20 lucky voters who will receive a No-Till Farmer shirt just by voting!
The winners will be announced in the Winter 2015 issue of No-Till Farmer’s Conservation Tillage Guide and will be recognized at an awards ceremony on Friday, Jan. 16, at the 23rd annual National No-Tillage Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Engineered for smaller fields, the nimble RG700 sprayer was recognized in 2013 as CropLife Iron Product of the Year and AgriMarketing magazine’s New Product of the Year, and as a 2014 recipient of an AE50 design award from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE).
In an attempt to harness the potential of the growing biomass industry, AGCO launched its first marketing group specific to this area of agriculture. The biomass marketing group is led by its marketing manager, Glenn Farris, and his business equipment and development specialist, Ken Wagenbach.
Ken leads biomass harvesting equipment design improvements and helps partners set up, maintain and operate equipment for optimum productivity, efficiency and reliability.
Q&A with Ken:
What are some of the advantages of biomass energy production?
Biomass energy is renewable and environmentally sustainable; it reduces our dependence on fossil fuels and our carbon footprint at the same time. In biomass energy production, the agriculture sector has a way to reduce production cost while increasing yields and revenues.
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned about biomass since joining the AGCO Biomass Solutions team?
Biomass hits at all the core competencies of AGCO products. Properly managing crops/land and soil/water, be it purpose grown or crop residue, and renewable energy political policies have equal impact on the economy of the producer.
What is some good advice for a farmer who is interested in incorporating biomass into his or her operation?
Regardless of one’s current opinion on government policies on renewable fuels, meeting the world demand for food and fiber in 2020 and beyond will require higher yields. With higher yields and the genetics needed to get there, crop residue in the future will require very heavy tillage, new equipment design and/or removal of it entirely. As farmers/producers, we WILL need the cellulosic outlet that biomass provides.
Have a question for Ken? Email him your question here: AGCO_Biomass_Solutions@AGCOCorp.com.
For additional information on AGCO Biomass Solutions, please visit: http://bit.ly/AGCOBiomass.