Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952 Page: 9
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AGRICULTURAL ENGINEERING 9
Tractor attachment for weeding vegetables
A home-made piece of equipment, developed by the Virginia station,
can be hooked to the rear of a tractor to save labor in weeding commercial
vegetable crops such as spinach, kale, and collards.
This attachment permits an early shallow, preemergence cultivation
of the entire soil surface after the crop is planted, and again at
the time the seeds are sprouting and beginning to come through the
ground. The weeder is made of an 8-foot length of flexible, heavygage
woven wire fencing cut wide enough to extend across the bed.
Part of the strip (about 1 foot of its total length) is held clear of the
ground by the tool holder of the tractor, while the remaining 6 feet
rest on the soil surface. The wire fencing is the type woven to form
2-inch squares with diagonally opposite corners, pointing forward
and backward. The attachment can be constructed by any farmer
with a few hours' labor and at a small cost.
Low volume spraying of vegetables
An inexpensive tractor-mounted sprayer has been developed by the
New-York State station for the application of insecticides to certain
vegetable crops. Construction details and recommendations for its
use are available. This sprayer may be constructed by the grower at a
cost of less than $150. It is suitable for spraying such canning crops
as beans, cabbage, carrots, peas, and possibly broccoli. The sprayer is
operated at about 80 pounds pump pressure and requires only 15 to
20 gallons of spray mixture to cover an acre of crop. The advantages
of this machine over dust-treating the crops are that it is less expensive,
probably less hazardous to the operator, and will give better
results under windy conditions. The sprayer does not handle wettable
powders satisfactorily, hence most currently used fungicides cannot
be applied with it.
Improved ground spraying of cotton
A new-type rig for use in the ground-spraying of cotton with organic
insecticides has been developed by the Mississippi station (coop.
USDA). This rig not only overcomes a technical difficulty involved
in ground-spraying with the newer insecticides, but combines the
spraying with cultivating operations.
Very small quantities of the highly concentrated organic phosphate
liquids are required when applied by airplane. However, similar
quantities applied in more dilute form with ground equipment proved
unsatisfactory. In seeking the reason for this, engineers learned
that when sprays are applied from airplanes the atmosphere modifies
the size of particle and the distribution and thereby permits a more
uniform coverage. This disparity between air and ground distribution
was overcome by attaching special-type spray nozzles to the new
ground spray rig which in turn is attached to the cultivator. This
new device makes it possible to spray and cultivate at the same time.
The Mississippi spray rig includes a tank for the insecticide and a
pump with the necessary strainers and valves for supplying pressure,
together with hose and piping to carry the liquid to the nozzles.
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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/m1/11/: accessed July 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.