planters and seeders are not only increasing in size; they are becoming ever more sophisticated.
Many now offer section control and variable rate application of both seed and fertiliser, as well as simultaneous application of herbicide.
1. Horsch Maestro 24-row planter
The Maestro is equipped with one of the smallest single-grain metering devices on the market.
Instead of shooting the seed into the soil, the Maestro places it evenly with absolutely accurate control. This is clearly where the future of modern grain singling is headed.
2. Amazone GreenDrill
The Amazone GreenDrill catch crop seed drill plants a cover crop directly into stubble when tilling soil or reseeding grass.
It fits on the Catros 3003 compact disc harrow (above), the Cenius mulch cultivator, the KG rotary cultivator and the KE rotary harrow.
The seed is distributed evenly by the spreader plates.
3. Rovic LGP 12R762/6200 12-row planter
This locally manufactured large grain planter features 12 rows, 762mm row spacing, and a 6 200ℓ tank.
Rovic is confident that it will prove ideal for local conditions.
Options include variable rate seed and fertiliser application, individual row shut-off, section control, seed firming, and ground pressure for each row.
4. Monosem 16-row Quad-Max planter
With large flotation tyres front and rear, the Quad-Max can plant on a row spacing as narrow as 450mm.
It can be ‘end-towed’ between lands and on the road, and the toolbar need not be folded forward or upward.
No fans, hydraulic motors or horizontal pipes are required to carry seed and fertiliser from the bulk hoppers to the row units.
Instead, the hoppers are very large and placed directly above each unit, and the seed and fertiliser are carried to the ground simply by gravity.
The Monosem seed meter is claimed to be the most accurate and durable on the market.
It accurately singulates the seeds of maize, sunflower, soya bean, peanuts and other crops, and places each seed at a uniform distance and depth.
5. Equalizer 32-row planter
Equalizer’s Nampo stand had insufficient space to display this new 32-row planter at its full 25m working width, but the machine still managed to impress with its neat 4,8m transport width.
The machine on show had completed its first season at Bultfontein in the Free State and its owner had been highly satisfied with its performance.
A planter of this size can plant at a rate of more than 25ha/h.
6. Lemken Solitair 12 seed drill
This trailed pneumatic seed drill, available in working widths of 8m, 9m, 10m and 12m, is Lemken’s biggest.
The large- volume 5 800ℓ hopper and an innovative coulter bar enable it to plant a large area in a day.
Double disc coulters with rubber tyre depth control wheels ensure that the seed is placed at an accurate, consistent depth, even when operating at speed.
All functions are controlled by the Lemken Solitronic system, which has a clearly legible display with easy-to-understand menus.
7. Great Plains YP-1630F 16-row planter
The Yield-Pro 1630F from Great Plains plants 16 rows at 762mm row spacing.
It is shown here in its folded transport configuration, which is 3,8m wide.
A tried-and-tested air drill metering system delivers fertiliser accurately to every row from the single fertiliser hopper.
A DICKEY-john PM 400 system monitors the seeding rate from each hopper and the flow of fertiliser to each row.
Optional insecticide hoppers can be added.
Each wing of this 12m-wide planter can flex upward by 6° or downward by 9° to follow lateral surface contours.
Joe Spencer is the mechanisation editor of Farmer’s Weekly.