562 - Planter Preparation - How Ready Is Yours?
The two factors most responsible for excellent results in 2012 are planting early and achieving a high plant population. Accurate seeding into a well prepared seedbed should result in about 70% of seed establishing a healthy plant. If 10 percent of the seed sown at a 4.7 inch spacing does not establish a harvestable root, losses could be as much as $100 per acre. Additional losses are likely from greater difficulty defoliating and harvesting uneven stands.
Questions to Ask About Your Planter:
- Do I need a new planter?
- Do I have adequate planting capacity to plant my crop on time?
- What repairs and maintenance should I do this winter?
- Have I stored my planter and plates properly this winter?
- Do I need to go to a test stand clinic again?
What Your Drill Needs To Do!
- Space seed accurately
- Plant at the desired depth
- Cause no seed damage
- Place granular insecticide properly
- Apply the correct rate of starter fertilizer
- Apply in-furrow fungicides at the correct rate
Seedbed Preparation Goals
- Manage residue to maximize stand establishment
- Shallow tillage to conserve moisture
- Control early germinating weeds
- Avoid compaction
- Properly incorporate fertilizer
- Establish cover crop
- Reduce the opportunity for spring erosion and stand loss
Planter Maintenance Considerations
- Are discs worn enough to affect seed placement?
- When were seed knocker wheels last changed?
- Are plates warped or grooved to the point of replacement?
- Are door seals damaged, worn or too stiff to work properly
- Are insecticide granule spoons or banders missing?
- Do doors close properly?
- Are vacuum gauges properly calibrated?
- Do you have the correct plates for seed sizes ordered for 2012?
- Have you calibrated insecticide applicators for each row?
- Is the monitor working properly?
- Are press wheels at the proper distance apart?
- Is each row unit exactly 22 inches apart?
- Are row markers or GPS guidance units set properly?
Information Available On Planter Storage, Maintenance, and Operation
- Planter off season storage guidelines
- Planter operation, maintenance and care brochure
- Planter pre-planting checklist
- Planter plate and seed size specifications recommendations
Access this information in our Stand Establishment section.
Every 10 beets/100 foot of row are worth about $40 per acre.