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Seeder or No Till Drill
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
JM 07-May-21
ILBow288 07-May-21
Pat Lefemine 07-May-21
JM 07-May-21
AccMan 07-May-21
AccMan 07-May-21
drycreek 07-May-21
JM 10-May-21
Pat Lefemine 10-May-21
t-roy 10-May-21
drycreek 10-May-21
BullBuster 11-May-21
darralld 11-May-21
JM 25-Nov-21
Pat Lefemine 25-Nov-21
JM 25-Nov-21
Mark Watkins 25-Nov-21
BullBuster 26-Nov-21
JM 26-Nov-21
MedicineMan 30-Nov-21
Medicinemann 30-Nov-21
From: JM
07-May-21
On my Farms in Southern Oklahoma I have a little over 10 acres of food plots to plant and I have been using the throw and mow method or maybe it should be called spray and pray method for the last couple of years and it works okay but I have never gotten great results. There are several problems with this method, one is that the seeds are on the surface and with larger seeds like Wheat, Oats and Rye the hogs can just hammer the seed. Second is that since the seeds germinates close to the surface and the hot weather that we often get through September can kill the plants. Last year we had good rains mid-September but then it turned hot and dry and didn’t rain for over a month. My plots started out good but then wilted in the hot/dry weather with only edges of the plots that were shaded grew very well. The local farmers who plant wheat for cattle grazing disk the fields and then drill the seed had much better results.

I have been researching food plot equipment and there seems to be two groups, the all in one seeders like the Woods Food Plot Seeder or the Firminator which have a disk, a seeder, and a cultipacker all in one and the No-Till-Drills like Genesis, Great Plains, and Landpride.

Seeder:

Advantages: Less Expensive, can disk/seed with one implement , can emulate a no till drill, lighter weight.

Disadvantages: Typically at least a two pass planting process, turns the soil over and opens the soil to drying and erosion.

No-Till -Drill:

Advantages: One pass planting, minimal soil disturbance, can drill annuals into perennial plots, better for building soil

Disadvantages: Expensive, will likely need to Spray to kill, Very Heavy.

My question for those who have experience, if you could buy either piece of equipment regardless of the price difference what would you purchase and why?

From: ILBow288
07-May-21
If you say price doesn't matter, no-till drill all day long. Opening the ground with a disk opens everything up to so much competition from weeds and every other seed thats present. Spray and kill everything, then drill. Some are even putting sprayers on the front of their tractors and doing it all in one pass. Expensive setup but it sure seems like the way to go.

From: Pat Lefemine
07-May-21
JM,

It really depends on what you are planting. If you are planting beans and corn, then I really like row planters over drills and precision seeder/one pass devices. If you are planting brassicas, clover, or alfala it's hard to beat the one-pass units like Woods. If you are planting rye, oats, wheat, peas, etc then the drill is best.

For the acreage you're planting I would have a hard time justifying a drill. They are really expensive unless you get a beat up drill on auction or through craigslist but understand that if you need to fix them, they are a bitch.

I am now planting about 40 acres of plots between my 3 properties. I don't own a drill. I just can't justify it. For the things I would need a drill for, I disk, broadcast, and then run a cultipacker over it. Works perfectly fine for me. It's not no-till but for the acres you are managing, disking should be Ok. I know that one of the habitat guys' tells everyone to use no-till drills. He's also sponsored by a drill manufacturer. .

I've been doing this for over 20 years and if I was starting out with a 10k budget this is what I'd buy:

1. Used JD 4-row 7000 planter (4k)
2. Used 10' cultipacker ($1500)
3. Used 10' travel disk harrow ($1500)
4. ATV mounted seeder/spreader ($500)
5. A good quality boom sprayer ($1000)
6. A good quality rotary cutter ($1500)

From: JM
07-May-21
Thanks for the responses!

I have a ten acre field and a five acre field I would love to plant in corn but I suspect the hogs would destroy it.

I definitely don't want an old beater drill I don't have the time for one, the main reasons I have considered a Drill is to preserve the soil moisture an minimize the time to plant.

I probably should give disk, spread, cultipack a try before jumping into a drill.

From: AccMan
07-May-21
Look for an old John Deere 71 planter with coulters. It will no till if it has coulters. They are good old planters and parts are still available. I use mine for soybeans, corn, rye, egyptian wheat, sorghum, lab lab, chufas and diakon radish. I still disk/till for the small seeds and cultipack. Mine has three planters on a 3 pt hitch, which is slow, but I plant small acreage and cant justify a drill.

From: AccMan
07-May-21
Look for an old John Deere 71 planter with coulters. It will no till if it has coulters. They are good old planters and parts are still available. I use mine for soybeans, corn, rye, egyptian wheat, sorghum, lab lab, chufas and diakon radish. I still disk/till for the small seeds and cultipack. Mine has three planters on a 3 pt hitch, which is slow, but I plant small acreage and cant justify a drill.

From: drycreek
07-May-21

drycreek's embedded Photo
drycreek's embedded Photo
I plant wheat and medium red clover in the fall, and sometimes daikon radish mixed in. In the spring it’s buckwheat in some plots and iron clay peas in others. A spray rig, a disk, a seeder, and a homemade tire drag is all I use. I don’t disk very deep and I get great results. The wheat in this pic that I just terminated was four feet tall.

From: JM
10-May-21
Looking at the JD Planters it looks like they are all 30 inch spacing, are you making a second pass between the rows to get down to 15inch rows when planting Soybeans or wheat?

Drycreak your plot looks great, when are you planting Buckwheat?

From: Pat Lefemine
10-May-21

Pat Lefemine's embedded Photo
30" rows at my Ohio ground last year.
Pat Lefemine's embedded Photo
30" rows at my Ohio ground last year.
I plant both beans and corn at 30" rows. Unless you are planting for production and trying to max out your tillable ground for the biggest yields, 30" rows are fine. GMO seeds are pricey and you will x2 your seed buy for 15" rows with no real benefit for a plotter - IMO.

From: t-roy
10-May-21
I would disagree (a little) with Pat’s assessment of no real benefit of narrower spacing of rows (on soybeans) With 15” spacing of your rows vs 30”, you will get quicker canopy with 15” rows, which can help some with weed suppression. Also, you can set your planting rate lower to adjust for less seeds planted per foot, then double row them. You will still probably plant more seeds per acre this way, but not terribly bad. There are also still quite a few 38” row spacing planters out there, as well. Double rowing with it, you will end up with 19” spacing vs 15”. I have a 30” 6 row planter, and overall, I’d say going with 30” spacing, the advantages of it, (planting, spraying, etc) far outweigh any benefits of narrower rows, for soybeans at least.

From: drycreek
10-May-21
JM, I’m hoping to plant this week if it stops raining in time. Iron clay cowpeas in some plots and buckwheat in others. My main spring plot is the peas, but I plant buckwheat in all new plots for the first two years. Helps the soil and knocks down weeds. The bees love it too !

From: BullBuster
11-May-21
RAIN? what the heck is that? Bone dry in north Idaho. Nothing significant since March. Worst I’ve seen in 25 years.

From: darralld
11-May-21
Spray, disc, broadcast & cover is all you need to do. And if it's a small seed like clover or turnips, don't cover it. That's all I do & it works great. I made a drag out of some old tires.

From: JM
25-Nov-21

JM's embedded Photo
Genesis 5 light
JM's embedded Photo
Genesis 5 light
After considering everyone's advice I just went ahead and did what I wanted :) Actually the input was very helpful. I considered a 4 row planter and looked around but there was not much available and what was was fairly expensive. I would like to be able to plant corn but I think the wild hogs would destroy it. I also don't think I have a plot big enough to plant soybeans so I think I am going to be mostly planting rye, oats, wheat, and peas. Well it took a little while but attached you can see my new toy. One thing I can tell people from hooking up the Genesis 5 light no till drill that the drill is very heavy and it is all my Kubota L6060 wants to handle.

From: Pat Lefemine
25-Nov-21
That’s a sweet little unit. Looks brand new? Ouch!

If it’s too heavy for your 60 then you’ll need to convince yourself (and wifey) that you need a bigger tractor. ;-)

From: JM
25-Nov-21
Pat, It's brand new, came in a little late to plant the fall food plots. I might need a bigger tractor anyway :)

From: Mark Watkins
25-Nov-21
John, HUGE congrats as you will love it.

I have a 3 pt Landpride No Till drill and love it for turnip, rape, kale rhutabaga, radish (one mix all at one time), alfalfa, clover, rye and oat plantings. I have a sandy loam and love to plant the day after a rain (assuming I’ve already sprayed Gly on the cover crop to kill it)

Make sure you’ve got plenty of weight on it (I added 780lbs of weights to my drill ) and you’ll love it!

From: BullBuster
26-Nov-21
I have a Woods FPS7200 and a Genesis 3. No question in my mind the no till drill is way more important. In fact I haven’t even used the woods since I got the Genesis. Wish I never bought the Woods. I’ll be selling it this spring. Only used it 2 seasons. Yes the Woods is better for small seed legumes but a hand spreader on tilled soil with a cultipacker works just fine and I only do that every 5 years or so. Genesis drills into anything. In fact I drilled Rye into my lawn and it’s coming up great. I drill all sorts of cereal grains into alfalfa and clover.

From: JM
26-Nov-21
Thanks for the input I hope to put it to some use on some spring plots to learn how to use it. I am hoping to improve my plots in more the more marginal locations.

One thing I can tell from my initial inspection is the the drill looks to be made very well nothing looks cheaply made. We will have to see how it performs.

From: MedicineMan
30-Nov-21
What part of southern OK are you in? If your close, your more then welcome to come over to my place and put a few test plots in! :)

From: Medicinemann
30-Nov-21
JM, PM sent

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