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Excel News » Wimmera Farmer Converts to Zero-Till

Glenorchy farmer Stewart Macpherson in a wheat crop sowed into heavy barley stubble

Direct seeded clover into wheat stubble

The Friggstad

Direct drilled Shaftal clover into grazed stubble

Local Wimmera identity Stewart Macpherson

Having spent a number of years practicing minimum tillage on his Glenorchy farm in the southern Wimmera, this year saw local identity Stewart Macpherson upgrade his equipment to a single disc planter. After researching various options he settled on converting his existing airseeder using Excel single disc units. This provided the benefit of direct drill disc seeder for a greatly reduced capital outlay.

With a mixed farming operation that still includes stock and a pasture rotation the Excel discs also provided greater flexibility with regards to a range of different paddock conditions.

“In some paddocks we are going straight back into stubble with cereals, canola or grain legumes. Sometimes the stubbles have been grazed by sheep sometimes they haven’t.

In some paddocks I have to sow small clover seeds into grazed stubbles or into existing pasture. I have even dabbled in some summer cropping so I need a machine that can handle various conditions without mucking around changing heaps of settings from paddock to paddock.

Having spent several years practicing no-till and direct drilling, Stewart was well aware of the advantages of the system and discs were the obvious next move to further improve the farm productivity and efficiency.

“We can get through a lot more stubble and it provides us with the flexibility to sow to a date. Due to the excellent seed placement germination is a lot more consistent than using tine machines so you have more confidence sowing dry”

“By the time I got rid of all the fruit such as press wheels, coulters etc. off my old bar it became very economical to upgrade to discs. I also didn’t have to worry about learning how to use a new airseeder as I kept my old one.”

“The old Friggstad bar is a solid machine and has been in the family for many years. We stripped her back and gave it a paint job and it has come up as good as new. It was a bit of a challenge getting the spacing right but being on 15 inches meant we could fit the disc units in pretty well. The only shortcoming is the bar doesn’t lift up very high so the closing wheels on the rear only just clear the ground when going down the road but it’s not a big issue.”

“This year I intend to finish off the Friggstad upgrade job by painting the wheels. I have to say that otherwise the bloke who sandblasted and re-painted the bar won’t be happy”

More information on Excel's direct drilling with disc seeders
For more information about direct drilling with disc seeders or any other aspects of no-till seeding feel free to contact your local Excel representative.

Excel AgricultureP: 07 4636 9100 F: 07 4636 9140 Toowoomba & Bendigo