Basic Tractor Cultivation

Basic Tractor Cultivation

What's a very basic set up for tractor cultivation?

Got weeds? So do most farms - probably all farms, although I've heard some deny it. Even if you manage to keep a field completely clean of weeds for a year there is still a seed bank of weeds waiting to germinate the next season. Even if you were to keep any of those seeds from germinating, or to eliminate all of those seeds, birds and other animals, as well as the wind, and you yourself would import new ones into your field. There's pretty much no way around having to deal with weeds in some way.

In an organic system there are a variety of weed control techniques, and as with most things they work best when they are all used together in a system. Timing, use of cover crops, tillage, irrigation, mechanical cultivation, and hand work all play significant roles in limiting weed pressure, eliminating competition with cash crops, and reducing the amount of work needed in the future.

To some, mechanical cultivation is one of those black arts, but it's not as mysterious as it might appear. For farms that are small enough it may just involve a wheel hoe, or even just a hand hoe, both are very versatile tools. Large scale operations can afford to set up multiple cultivating tools on tractors, each tool dedicated to the different stages of single crops, very specialized tools. Farms in the middle, growing a diverse range of crops, in a variety of seasons and weather, need the versatility of the hand hoe, coupled with the productivity of tractors (or maybe even animal traction).

Add your thoughts to this conversation

Log in or register to post comments