RETURN TO WEEDING: Experience from AGRODRUŽSTVO KLAS
At the end of May, AGRODRUŽSTVO KLAS in the Pardubice Region expanded its machine equipment with a new weeder, ROW-MASTER RN 6400. Read about the first experience of the company’s plant production manager.
Advantages of ROW-MASTER RN
ROW-MASTER RN 6400 has a handy additional fertilisation set for applying fertiliser into the growth of wide-row crops during vegetation. Furthermore, the weeder is equipped with Culti-Cam, equipment for precise optical guiding in vegetation. The working parts of the machine are chisels with shares, which are a more suitable option preventing damage to air roots.
AGRODRUŽSTVO KLAS used to use standard German weeders. Later, they reduced their use and transferred to post-emergent spraying of the crop. However, they are going back to cultivation. They now only weed corn on their land. In the future, they are planning to use the weeder also for sugar beet, mainly due to weed beet.
Mr. Bubeníček, Plant Production Manager, emphasises: “Fields are disappearing and so we have to intensify corn cultivation, increase the crop and distribute the access of nitrogenous fertilisers into more batches during the vegetation period. And we are able to do that with a weeder that also enables fertiliser application.”
First Look at the Weeder
ROW-MASTER RN 6400 with an additional-fertilisation set was first used in the field near Rohoznice, namely in combination with Zetor Forterra HSXwith 140 horsepower. During the first two workdays, the machine cultivated a total of 80ha of corn out of the planned 450ha at speed of 8– 9km/h.
The inter-row distance of the working units of the weeder was set to 76.2cm at the time of our visit, with a shallow working depth. Also, nitrogenous fertiliser DAM in the batch of 100L/ha is applied in a single pass during crop cultivation.
“I was afraid that the camera wouldn’t work correctly in the crop, but it’s working. It continuously searches. It looks for a different colour, a corn row and a fallow. We are now going to an area with tall weeds and it is still weeding. Naturally, we are still tuning it and improving, but we are now running without any issues. We will weed at least once. Twice in areas where we did not apply fertiliser before sowing,” Mr. Bubeníček adds.
Production of AGRODRUŽSTVO KLAS
According to the information from Mr. Bubeníček, the co-op currently manages 3,585ha of land, out of which 3,100ha is arable soil, and 485ha is permanent grassland. They plant a wide range of crops in the arable soil, mainly used for their own animal production. Currently, it is 76ha of winter barley, 103ha of soya, 130ha of sugar beet, 180ha of winter rapeseed, 250ha of alfalfa, 522ha of corn, 640ha of spring barley for the Pilsner Urquell brewery, and 1,220ha of wheat.
Their animal production includes 780 dairy cows and about 75 pieces of cattle for meat. They are Holstein Friesian cattle and Charollais cattle. They also have some pigs, but it is not currently their main production.
Bc. Zdeněk Souhrada