KEEPING WEEDS UNDER CONTROL THE MECHANICAL WAY

Mechanical weed management can be more cost effective than herbicides, has no damaging residual problems and is non selective as well as having beneficial effects such as breaking soil crusts, aerating the soil and mobilizing microbes and nutrients.

When weeds in row crops are cultivated, often the tilling implement is unable to till accurately because of steering and depth management difficulties and haphazard soil movement in to the plant row and on to the plants sometimes bending them over or covering them with clumps of soil etc.

Fix Engineering manufactures and supplies implements to overcome these problems.

Parallelogram weeding implement Weed-Fix developed and manufactured in Australia (now also produced in Holland for the northern hemisphere) is a vertical tine power-scuffler and is adjustable from a minimum of 200mm row spacing to 1m row spacing

Weed-Fix is designed to cultivate between the rows and accurately move soil in to the plant row to smother the weeds, thus eliminating the need for herbicides and or handwork.

Leaf lifters can be fitted to plant shields to elevate ground hugging leafs to avoid them being covered by soil.

Tine penetration and under shield space is determined by adjustable surface wheels lightly rolling on the growing surface close to the rows. There is no other weed management tool for row crops as versatile and efficient as Weed-Fix.

The Weed-Fix beet blade machine is an economical alternative for some crops. Cultivation is as shallow or deep as desired and close to the rows even under ground hugging leaves with minimum soil disturbance. This machine is ideally suited to crops like lettuce etc where in row soil movement needs to be kept zero.

All the Weed-Fix models are reversible for front or rear mounted configurations.

To steer the implement accurately along the rows several methods are employed.

A row gauge can be mounted to the side of the tractor behind the front wheels within easy view. When the row gauge is on the row the implement is on the row.

Hug Boards designed for crops grown on beds, are easily adapted to seeders and planters for perfect placement of rows on the beds and establish a reference between the row and the edge of the bed. (This will make Weed-Fix and other Implements accurate tracking much easier.)

Hug Boards can also be fitted to Weed-Fix for automatic tracking without electronic complications.

Till-Fix is designed to kill the first flush of weeds before sowing or transplanting. It is often most important to eliminate the first flush of weeds to give the crop a chance to establish without excessive weed pressure. Then follow up weed management is far easier.

Other systems for vineyards and orchards are also available.