Soil Sensitivity & Drill Modifications

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Ditches

My no-till fields are eroding. Not much of the total soil is leaving, but I have more ditches and rills. My plan is to work the ground and pull the ditches in. I hope to drill it to wheat this fall. I’d appreciate any ideas.

—Bob

Try to haul in sod from the fence line. Sod has roots that hold water better than fresh dirt. Tile can also help the water soak in and not run off your land.

—John

You have too much exposed soil for the amount of water that is potentially coming across the fields. One solution is to keep the soil covered at all times. Government tax dollars provide soil and water experts who can help devise a good farm plan.

The soil judging scorecard recommends strip cropping across the contour and/or no-till on 6 to 18 percent slopes. Tile drainage, sod waterways, diversion channels and other practices have a place in these plans.

—Ed Winkle, ffa@voyager.net

Upgrading Drills

The drill I use for no-tilling is a Flexi-Coil 820 with 12-inch row spacing. I also use Anderson/Stealth openers with 4-inch packers mounted on the shanks, dry starter and aqua fertilizer.

I want to buy a Concord 4812 drill because of the edge on the shank and the wider width. The only problem is deep-banding liquid fertilizer since shank drills offer this feature, but many disc drills don’t.

—Tim, herdrick@televar.com

Stay with the hoe openers. Disc openers have a tough time getting through without hairpinning. There’s…

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