Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952 Page: 8
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8 REPORT ON EXPERIMENT STATIONS, 1952
ground speed of 10 miles per hour. Seed damage was less than 1 percent,
stands of peanuts were uniform, and there were no significant
differences in stand count at different speeds except where rock or hard
spot was encountered by the furrow opener. Uniform 3-inch spacing
of peanuts was also obtained by the planter in several soils at the rates
of 10 miles per hour in straight rows and 3.5 miles per hour in curving
hillside rows on rolling land.
The unit was also tried with soybeans where 1-inch spacing was
desired. The same belts were used, each hole in the belt picking up
three soybeans. At speeds above 4 miles per hour enough scatter in
the row was produced to provide a surprisingly uniform 1-inch spacing
Pasture improvement by machinery
The Mississippi station developed a machine that makes it possible
to reseed and fertilize pasture sod in one operation. This machine is
essentially a heavy-duty grain and fertilizer drill, with special furrow
cutter openers that cause very little disturbance as they move through
heavy turf growth. Tests conducted by the station showed that with
this new equipment it is possible to produce as much winter forage or
more than could be produced under the former standard method of
seeding and fertilizing grain on a prepared seedbed. The best results
were obtained when seed was sown in sod in rows 16 inches apart, the
fertilizer being put 1 inch to the side of the seed and 1 i-nch lower.
With the new equipment the sod can be seeded and the fertilizer put
down in one trip across the field, thus replacing the four or five operations
previously necessary in getting good winter pasture established.
Mechanical weeding of sugar beets
A two- or four-row sugar beet weeding machine that also acts as a
cultivator, has been developed by research engineers at the Colorado
station (coop. USDA).2 The machine makes application of a new
principle. The action of the machine in "selecting" between weeds
and beets is based on the fact that beet roots are stronger from the
time of emergence than weed roots. Weeding is done by flexible tines,
mounted on power-driven circular frames, which revolve in an in-anout
motion through the beet rows. Arrangement of tines and the
method by which a row is weeded are similar to that of a revolving
egg beater moving sidewise. The unit can be adjusted to weed four
rows or when intermeshed to weed two rows at a time. One of the
advantages of the intermeshed adjustment is the gentle weeding action
around the plants.
The machine can be operated at about 2 1to 3 miles per hour. The
size of the beets determines the operating speed and whether the machine
should be used as a two-row or four-row unit. Best results
have been obtained when the beets were in the two-leaf stage. In use
on two rows at a time 23.6 percent of the weeds and 13.7 percent of
beet seedlings were removed. Adjusted for four-row operation the
machine removed 40.1 percent of the weeds and 16.4 of the beets.
2 Hereafter, where the U. S. Department of Agriculture has given assistance
in a specific field, that cooperation is indicated by the notation "(coop. USDA)."
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United States. Office of Experiment Stations. Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952, book, January 1953; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5990/m1/10/: accessed February 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.