Available both on new drills and for retro-fitting to existing machines, Claydon has developed a range of fertilizer placement systems for its Hybrid drill range.
On the three-meter working width machine the system uses a split hopper capable of carrying 750kg of fertilizer and 750kg of seed, positioned forward on the drill for improved stability, says the manufacturer. Fertilizer and seed are fed through two individual metering units so varying rates can be applied.
However, for its 4m, 4.8m and 6m Hybrid drills a front-mounted 1,250kg capacity hopper has been developed, with fertilizer blown through to a second distributor head. There is also a 1,000 liter front tank option, developed in association with Chafer, for applying liquid fertilizers, with 1,500l and 2,000l versions to follow.
Claydon Research and Development manager Matt Bowe says the fertilizer placement has been designed to work with the strip till system on the Hybrid drill. “The Claydon strip tilling system only works the soil within the immediate seeding zone and leaves the areas between undisturbed. Placing fertilizer within the seeding zone at drilling ensures the nutrients are exactly where the young plant needs them.
“This avoids fertilizer being wasted on the undisturbed ground, so will ensure the optimum amount of nutrient is available to the young seedling, for better utilisation and a potential fertilizer cost saving.”
In standard format, the fertilizer is fed down the back of the leading chisel breaker tine and is placed 75mm to 100mm below the seeding zone.
“This is the most popular configuration in Europe,” says Mr Bowe. “However, if required the fertilizer can be fed down the back of the seeding tine, so it is mixed with the seed, or placed on the surface, with the latter being more common in Scotland.”
The application rate for solid fertilizers is set and controlled using the drill’s RDS Artemis electronic control system, while the liquid fertilizer system requires its own control box.
Both solid fertiliser systems can also be used to apply micro granular fertiliser, and the RDS Artemis control unit enables application rates from 2-450kg/ha to be applied.
Claydon is also able to supply a specific micro-fertilizer application system for all Hybrid drills, with micro granules metered into the seed flow using a modified Stocks Rotor Meter. Control is via the drill’s Artemis system, via the Stocks Wizard variable rate controller or a simple Vari-Speed system.
The fertilizer range will be launched at Cereals, where prices will also be announced.