Over the past three years, we have worked tirelessly to fine tune our farming and Haskap orchard practices. We have created over 40 acres of orchards. We are using the results and experience to make better and more productive ones every year.
The two key “Ground Changing Pieces of Equipment” for our orchard creation are the Seppi Mulcher and Agrowplow. These allow us to improve the soil’s health and create an orchard from previously unproductive land.
Cutover to Orchard Solution
It is equipped with a category 2, 3-point linkage to fit tractors to 200 hp, this machine can work with either 540 or 1000 rpm (revolutions per minute) pto speeds. This innovation allows for the most efficient use of tractor power when working soil, crushing stones or mulching wood. Tractors should be equipped with creeper gear type transmission.
We are very impressed with its work in converting old hay pasture or former cutover forest land to agriculture land. The pictures below show it hard at work in our orchards and in creating new Haskap orchards.
The Agrowplow Solution
The ‘Agrowplow’, which we use extensively in our and our clients orchards. Its origins began with observation and concern about devastating effects of conventional cultivation on Australian soils. It replaces the need for expensive and ineffective ’tile drainage’.
Today, Agrowplow remains focused and dedicated to the development of innovative farming practices and equipment to improve and protect any nation’s greatest asset – its soil!
Agrowplowing, or non-inversion tillage is lifting and shattering hard soil pans without soil inversion. The task is accomplished with minimum soil surface disturbance ensuring that precious top soil is left on the surface and minimal moisture is lost to the atmosphere.
Top soil is not mixed with less fertile subsoils or less fertile subsoils mixed with fertile top soil. The topsoil remains virtually undisturbed and is less susceptible to wind and water erosion than conventionally cultivated soils. The patented design of the Agrowplow shank prepares and renovates the root zone of the soil without inversion.
This unique ability of root bed renovation improves water infiltration, humus levels, soil structure and sustainable productivity. Root development is enhanced by an unrestrictive soil environment.
How is Soil Compaction Rectified?
- Step 1 – Break up compacted soils, hard pans, clay pans, tillage pans and impenetrable barriers with an Agrowplow.
- Step 2 – Re-establish plants with strong, deep root systems to rebuild and hold the soil structure, bulk and porosity in a healthier state – preferably using direct drilling or minimum tillage techniques.
- Step 3 – Use farming practices which minimise soil cultivation, soil inversion and traffic in wet soils.
Advantages of Agrowplowing
Agrowplows are used for both primary and secondary tillage. They work without soil inversion and therefore minimise moisture loss. The narrow edge on tine design substantially reduces tractor horsepower requirements.
The low angle digging tool and narrow shank of the Agrowplow ensures that the previous crops root systems are fully retained in the soil. This improves structure, adding humus, increasing water infiltration and holding moisture whilst allowing greater utilization of nitrogen created by legume Rhizobium bacteria.
The Agrowplow can be successfully applied in most situations. It has been used extensively in the farming of traditional row crops: cereal, cotton, sugar, vegetables, and permanent crops: hop-yards, vineyards and orchards under both dry land and irrigation farming methods.
Agrowplowing is also particularly effective in pasture renovation and the control of water run-off, allowing infiltration and storage within the soil. Wind erosion is reduced and salinisation problems can be reduced. Hardpans and barriers, created by fine particles moving downwards into the coarse soil structures creating an almost impenetrable layer, can be eliminated.
It should be noted that hard pans can be re-established quickly unless tractor traffic is reduced. Normal cultivation requires many more passes of a tractor than direct drilling. Measurements from many soil types indicate that the depth of the traffic compaction layer varies according to soil type. Generally, the lower the clay content of the soil, the deeper the hard pan formation.