Types of planting equipments
History of planting equipment
- Broadcasting seed by hand over loose soil and
covering them with some type of harrow was the common method
of planting until about the middle of the 19th Century.
- By that time some drills were made in Pannsylvania.
- The earliest row-crop planter patent was granted
almost at the same time.
- One or two decades later the check-row planter
- The hill-drop attachment did not come into
use until the 20th Century.
Types of planting equipment
We will see that planting equipment can be grouped
in the following types
- Precision planters (row crop)
- Grain drills
- Potato planters
- Vegetable planters
Types of Planters
- Planters can give different types of
precision and distribution patterns depending upon which of
the following machines is being used.
- Regular drill planter
- Check-row planter
- Hill drop planter
Regular drill planter
In the regular drill-planter, the seeds
are individually picked from the hopper by a circular plate
and they are released in the shank to be delivered by gravity
to the bottom of the furrow, Figure 2. With this planter the
bouncing of seeds against the shank and the soil creates some
variability in the seed spacing.
- In check-row planting, plants line up
crossways for cross-cultivation. It facilitates weed control
in wet years when weeds may get as high as the corn before the
first cultivation is possible.
- Chemical weed control has reduced the
need for check-row planting to control weeds.
- The check-row planter picks the seed
from the hopper in the same way the regular drill does, but
they are accumulated in the shank valve before being deposited
in the furrow. The valve is operated by a check-wire which is
held at the ends of the field by two anchor stakes, Figure 1.
- Every time the operator reaches the end
of the field, he has to turn the tractor into the next row,
move the anchor stake and place the wire in the check head.
- A serious disadvantage of check-row planting
is the extra time required to handle the wire and move the stakes.
- With the advent of quick-hybrid corn,
high application rates of starter fertilizer, and chemical weed
control, the cross cultivation advantage is now not very important.
Hill drop planter
- It is a check-planter using an automatic valve
tripping mechanism instead of check-wire. It offers the same
advantages of check planting without presenting the greatest
disadvantage of the extra time and labor required for planting.
Hill-drop and check planters must be equipped with valves. The
upper, located immediately below the seed plate, collects the
number of kernels for one hill.
- The lower valve, located just above the soil
surface in the boot, re-groups the kernels and ejects them into
the furrow, Figure 10.
- Recent design developments in corn planters
have replaced the double valve by a rotary valve, Figure 11.
- The new designs are intended to give improved
hill dropping performance at speeds of six MPH, and reduce the
number of moving parts.
- For all types of planters we have seen up to
now, there are some components that are common to all of them
with some minor differences.
- Metering device (hoppers)
- Seed delivery mechanism
- Furrow openers and covers
- Press wheels
- The most popular hoppers being used for
corn, cotton, beans etc., are:
- Richmond hopper (specially for corn)
- Single seed cotton hopper
- Reserve-seed cotton hopper
- Duplex hopper (all seeds except cotton)