Training  Kit No. 1.5 
 

SHALLOW CULTIVATION FOR CEREALS

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Photo No. 35  

Your present system of seed bed preparation, fertilising and sowing for the cereal crop takes many months.

It is costly and the seed bed is often poor.

First the land is worked with a disc plough which produces many clods.

Medic pods will be buried deep in the soil.

 

Photo No. 35

Alternatively a mould board plough is used which also produces many clods and rough ground.

The mould board plough buries medic pods so they cannot regenerate in future seasons.
 

 Photo No. 36

The clods are broken down with other implements such as this tandem disc or cover cropper.

This implement is not good for medic pods either. They are not all buried but the top 10 to 15 cm is mixed and many medic pods are too deep to germinate in future seasons.

A light cultivator is sometimes used.

Photo No. 37

When you sow cereals after medic you must use a scarifier.

The ploughs and discs will bury the pods so deep the seeds do not germinate in future years.

The scarifier replaces the plough and the tandem disc.

It will save you money. It is used to open the soil and to carry out further cultivations.

Note the tines on the scarifier. They are strong to break open hard ground.

They are closer together than a chisel.

 

Photo No. 38

The scarifier is used to cultivate the land to a depth of about 10 cm.

Shallow cultivation saves time and money.

 

Photo No 38

Harrows are used in combination with the scarifier.

The scarifier dig the weeds out of the ground and the harrows knock the soil away from their roots so they die.

The harrows also break down clods.

 

Photo No. 39

You begin cultivating the land after the first rain in autumn.

Two cultivation with the scarifier and harrows will produce a good seed bed.  

Photo No 40

A good level seed bed with few clods will mean that the seed and fertiliser are sown at an even depth.

This will allow you to use less seed.

As less seed is wasted you achieve the same plant density.

It is easier to apply herbicides to an even seed bed and the harvester can worker faster and more efficiently.  

Photo No. 41

Only phosphate fertiliser is needed with the cereal seed.

The medic pasture in the previous year will supply the nitrogen.

Sowing the cereal seed and fertiliser together will achieve a better yield.
 

Photo No 42

This simple, cheap and rapid cultivation program allows you to sow your cereal crop early and control weeds.

Early sowing gives you a better chance of achieving a good yield.

Shallow cultivation with a scarifier is essential to save your medic seed reserves but it also saves you money, time and effort. 

Continue to next Kit No. 1.6

Further links and information.

See Buyers' Guide to scarifiers for more details on the tine spacing of scarifiers and chisels. Also tine break away pressure and many other important design details.