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"Cultivator" Uses Rubber Tires To Pull Weeds
In 1978 FARM SHOW published a story on the Bourquin weed puller, a mechanical weed puller that used rubber tires to pull tall-growing weeds from low growing crops (Vol. 2, No. 1). The machine went out of production in the 1980's when Monsanto started promoting weed wiper machines to apply Roundup.

    Inventor Dan Bourquin recently called FARM SHOW to say that, due to renewed interest from organic farmers, he has updated the machine and put it back on the market.

    "We've been getting phone calls from growers who can't use herbicides but have to grow a crop that's as weed-free as possible. An organic farmer recently called us after an inspector told him there were too many weeds in his crop. It was too late to use our machine so he had to destroy the crop. If he'd have called us sooner we could probably have saved the crop.

    "Another factor is the trend to growing Roundup Ready soybeans after Roundup Ready corn, which can result in a lot of Roundup Ready volunteer corn. Our weed puller is really good at taking that volunteer corn out. It also works great for sugar beets, vegetables, low lying soybeans, Spanish peanuts, and more," says Bourquin.

    The machine is designed to brush along the top of the crop to remove tall weeds in the row. A series of rubber wheels, which are driven hydraulically, rotate against each other, grabbing weeds which extend above the crop row and yanking them out of the ground.

    The unit can be front or rear-mounted and can be used by itself or mounted on a cultivator, tilling the soil and pulling the weeds in a single operation.

    The original machine used rubber-tired wheels only, but the new machine combines rubber-tired wheel with a metal roller that's covered by a rubber mesh material.

    "In extremely wet conditions the rubber wheels got wet and could slip. The mesh material prevents that from happening," says Bourquin.

    The wheels on the original machine ran at 160 rpm's, but on the new machine they run at only 20 to 30 rpm's. "The slower rotation helps the wheels grab the weed better, and then the forward motion of the tractor pulls it out," says Bourquin.

    Farmers using herbicides may only need the machine in a crisis, when a breakdown of herbicide occurs, says Bourquin. "The machine won't always get 100 percent of the weeds but it'll get most of them."

    The weed puller is available in 2, 4, 6, 8 and 12-row models. It requires a tractor hydraulic system with at least 2,000 lbs. of pressure.

    The Bourquin Weed Puller sells for $1,750 per row.         Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Bourquin's Farm Mkt. & Trading Co., Inc., 155 East Willow, Colby, Kan. 67701 (ph 785 462-3300 or cell 785 443-2774; office@colbycamp.com; www.organicweedpuller.com).

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2010 - Volume #34, Issue #3