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Progressive Farm Products Strip-Till Toolbars
No-till farming is an idea whose time should end, says Richard Follmer, owner and head innovator at Progressive Farm Products, Hudson, Ill., who regularly takes on the media, Extension Service, chemical cornpanies, implement manufacturers and others who say one-trip zero-till corn planting is the way to go.
"I've been getting a lot of complaints from farmers at farm shows who want to know what they're doing wrong because they're not getting the yields with no-till that they read about in farm magazines. When I tell them one-trip no-till corn planting will never work the way they want it to, they don't believe me because that's not what they're hearing everywhere else," says Follmer.
He's quick to state that putting no-till attachments on planter toolbars may work fine in some soils, but he feels it won't work in heavy soils like you commonly find in much of the Midwest. And it's especially troublesome, he notes, for farmers with different types of soil on their farms.
"You can get all the attachments set for one type of soil, but when you get into another type, you'll get into trouble. Depth control and seed spacing suffer and you'll have plugging and other problems," he says.
In heavy soils, the ground needs to be opened up and allowed to warm up a bit before corn is planted, he says.
Progressive Farm Products sells strip-till toolbars equipped with planter markers. They till precise 10-in. wide row strips in the field for planting by conventionally-equipped planters. You can either run the strip-till toolbar through the field in the fall and then plant in the spring, or run the toolbar through the field a couple hours before planting. Fertilizer and chemicals can be applied with the strip-till toolbar.
Follmer recently introduced a new dry fertilizer spreader for air delivery into strip-tilled rows. A large hopper runs on its own wheeled chassis ahead of the toolbar. An air manifold beneath the hopper directs fertilizer to each row.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Rich Follmer, Progressive Farm Products, Inc., Rt. 1, I-39, Exit 2, Hudson, Ill. 61748 (ph 309 454-1564).

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1994 - Volume #18, Issue #4