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Achieving Photocopy Plants: Compaction

Compaction can affect soil density, root development, opening disk penetration, and the agronomic drivers that impact yield.
Compaction can affect soil density, root development, opening disk penetration, and the agronomic drivers that impact yield.

This post continues our Be Ready blog series looking at the six agronomic drivers that impact photocopy plants; this installment focuses on compaction.

Compaction is every farmer’s nemesis. It affects soil density, root development, opening disk penetration, and influences a number of agronomic drivers that can impact your yield.

How do you prevent compaction in your fields?

Case IH has designed the Early Riser® 5 series planter to combat compaction with its leading edge disk design. The narrow design penetrates hard soils with less weight while slicing through residue like a sharp steak knife.   The narrower profile of the leading edge disk displaces ¾ inch less soil at a two inch cutting depth than a conventional row unit. When combined with the reduced inner radius gauge wheel that uses the inside groove to capture and retain the soil coming out of the seed trench, it creates the industry’s softest seed trench wall. As a result, a seed protection shoe holds the trench open long enough for the seed to be uniformly placed at a constant depth in the trench. Conventional row units’ flat gauge wheels smash and mix the seed trench soil with dry surface soil and works in conjunction with the wide-cut nose-to-nose opening disk to smear and compress the seed trench wall tight enough so that it doesn’t collapse before the seed gets into the trench.

“Early Riser planters leave behind the softest trench sidewall in the industry,” says Bill Hoeg, Case IH Planter Marketing Manager. “The planter’s design keeps the weight of the planter 1 ¾ inch away from the edge of the seed trench, so it doesn’t leave a compaction profile at the base of the trench like conventional row units.”

Gauge Wheel 228x128 Achieving Photocopy Plants: Compaction

Controlling compaction sets the stage for better emergence

After seeds have been placed, the offset inverted closing disk slides the last soil out of the trench back over the top of the seed. Its beveled, offset design then spoons moist soil up against the side of the seed and zips the trench up from the bottom, leaving a uniform “compaction-free” soil density around the seed, explains Hoeg. This method creates the softest side wall, eliminating compaction in the initial plant root zone area—and directly underneath the seed.

By controlling compaction, the stage is set for better emergence. On average, seeds come up three days faster with more robust root development when planted by a Case IH Early Riser 5 series planter, according to Hoeg.

Find out more: To learn more about agronomic considerations at planting and photocopy plants, click here to request a new Agronomic Design Insights report on seed placement accuracy.

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