Which Planter is best for closing seed slots in clay soils?

Farmers weigh in on how planters can be more effective in clay-heavy soils.

We are in western Pennsylvania in the glacial moraine. Soils can change 3 or more times in 100 yards! We’ve had good luck closing with the Yetter Copperhead wheels on our John Deere 1755 set at about mid-pressure in the closers. It’s not always perfect, but we’ve thankfully had good stands with this setup.

— John Beatty, Butler, Pa.

Fixing closing issues starts at the seed opener. We started with Kinze, went to Case IH and now have a Horsch. Each one responds differently. The Kinze was not strong enough for our tough soils. We liked the Case but had to switch the OEM RID (reduced inside diameter) gauge wheels for a Deere style because the RID allowed the sidewall to blow out and not close properly.

We also took the small convex disc closers off and replaced them with a finger-style wheel. Then we took the wide 4-inch firming wheel off and replaced that with a V-style closer, an Xtreme Furrow Cruiser from Copperhead Ag.

We plant green, and if our cover crop is robust, then the top 1/2 inch doesn’t want to close. But if we push the seed to 2 1/2 inches, the bottom 2 inches is crumbled and closes nicely, so we went looking for a planter that would get us there. That brought us to a Horsch.

— Larry Dyck, Campden, Ont.

I agree with Larry. Get a Horsch. It’s an amazing planter for planting corn into green covers. Our soils vary from too-soft prairie…

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Carlos Peterson

Carlos is an editorial intern with Lessiter Media, working with the Ag side of the company. He's worked in various settings as a reporter including healthcare, sports and general assignment. He is a Communication and Journalism graduate from the University of Kansas.

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