Jump to content

Unofficial Home of Old Simplicity & Allis-Chalmers Garden Tractors

Cultivator use and related matters


dentwizz

Recommended Posts

I am planning on starting a smallish garden in my yard this spring. I have the FDT landlord and center/rear cultivator set to work with. If needed I have a power tiller, albeit walk-behind. What I would like to know is are there any how-tos and don't do's with this considering this is a fresh(lawn) area at the moment and I have never tried working from that stage.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simpleton7016
I played with various cultivator set ups, and as far as i am concerned, the moldboard plow is essential if you are tearing up virgin lawn. A rototiller will to the job if the ground is wet, but hidden roots and rocks will really tear your machine up. The cultivator just doesn't have enough down pressure to tear into it nicely....though Johnmonkey's setup might do the trick. Just my opinion....
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The cultivators aren't intended to tear up hard soil. They're intended, as the name says, to cultivate plants that have already sprouted and come up in a garden that you had tilled or plowed and disc harrowed before planting. They're intended to just gently scratch (i.e. 1" to 3" deep) the surface of the garden, pulling up small weeds/grass, and breaking the crust that naturally forms. With sweeps on them, you can gently pull fresh soil up against the plants, covering any small weeds that grew up close to the plants. I would imagine that it was ideally intended for use on larger vegetable gardens or sweet corn plots -- i.e. something too large to do it with a walk-behind tiller, yet smaller than a truck farm operation. Your tiller will do just about the same thing. The only time a cultivator could/would be used to prepare for seeding is if the garden had already been plowed or tilled, yet not planted, and you wanted to simultaneously weed it and scratch up fresh topsoil for planting. [img]http://www.simpletractors.com/images/new_in_1969/cultivator.jpg[/img] [img]http://www.simpletractors.com/images/b_attachments_images/cult_spec1_small.jpg[/img]
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thats about what I had thought. It is the type in the first picture. So the initial ground breaking should be done by something more like a moldboard unit?
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with Kent. The two section cultivators are great their intended task, culivating. I only wish I have more than 4 rows this summer, I could have cultivated a couple acres at the rate I was going;) For working under sod you will need to till it very well with your tiller or use a plow as others have suggested. It might take some time to get it blended well if you have clay soil.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simpleton7016
I'll tell you what (and this is a little off topic), but I found the best alternative to weeding that I ever imagined. Last year on Craiglist I found a guy who was selling hundreds of feet of used conveyer belt. It came in 100 foot sections, four feet wide and 5/8's inch thick. He loaded it on a U-haul with a skid loader and tie it to a tree and drive away to unload it. I cut it into 35 foot lengths (the length of my garden). Then, I bored 2" diameter holes every 18 inches (had to use a sawzall to cut the holes and it took the better part of a full day). I rolled all the sections out side by side over my freshly tilled garden and planted seeds. I needed to weed for the first 3-4 weeks or so, but after that, I did not need to weed again all summer and it was my best vegetable garden ever - by far! I watered every morning and need to refine the underlying crown of the soil a bit this coming year (for drainage),,,but I am telling you, it was the most bountiful year I have ever had. Some have suggested that it the added heat resulting from the black rubber may be the "happy factor". I am not sure, but it worked awesome. Some said grubs would be a problem, but they were not. Amyway, I found out that most big road construction companies have tons of this used conveyor laying around and they can't get rid of it....so if anyone is up for a little labor on the front end (and hate weeding), then believe me, this system rocks! At the end of the year you just roll it up and sit it at the end of the garden. Rototill, add some compost, till again in the spring, and roll the mats out. Voila, perfect garden!
Link to comment
Share on other sites

gardening is one of my favorite things to use my tractors for. i got ahold of this cultivator last year. [IMG]http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l226/perry71/springtooth001.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l226/perry71/OCTpics004.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l226/perry71/landlord010.jpg[/IMG]
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You say you want a small garden,if possible I would try to remove the sod first then tilling is no big thing. I build custom furniture so I have a lot of saw dust and wood chips, I put them between the rows but not right up to the plants,keeps the weeds down real nice and then I till in in the fall. I found out the hard way not to use walnut saw dust or chips killed some of my tomato plants.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

IMO the best way to break up sod is with a plow, roll the grass and root mass under, keep it watered to aid its decomposing, then till it waitting as long as possible. Best if you can do the plowing in the fall. I did this a couple years ago on a piece until I got too close to trees I didn't want to loose, then used the tiller as the plow will rip the roots out whereas the tiller will bounce over them somewhat.. I still had grass roots where I tilled it last sumer, where I fall plowed it I had none the next spring.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

quote:
Originally posted by dentwizz
I am planning on starting a smallish garden in my yard this spring. I have the FDT landlord and center/rear cultivator set to work with. If needed I have a power tiller, albeit walk-behind. What I would like to know is are there any how-tos and don't do's with this considering this is a fresh(lawn) area at the moment and I have never tried working from that stage.
I am in the same boat as you. Starting a new garden in the spring. First time since I was a wee little lad helping my grandpa in his. From my understanding you need to plow, disc, and then cultivate (over crops). Or you could skip the plow and use a tiller. I can't find one, I cant even find a used plow and cant muster up the $300 for a new one. Here is a good series of articles I found regarding small tractor gardening: http://www.endtimesreport.com/garden_tractor_gardening.html
Link to comment
Share on other sites

quote:
Originally posted by perry
gardening is one of my favorite things to use my tractors for. i got ahold of this cultivator last year. [IMG]http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l226/perry71/springtooth001.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l226/perry71/OCTpics004.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l226/perry71/landlord010.jpg[/IMG]
I am GREEN with envy lol.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

this post comes at a perfect time. yesterday i pulled up the wreckage of the veggie garden. last week it got down to 27 degrees for a couple of hours and wiped out the tomatoes and peppers and papiya. i think the star fruit tree may be gone, too. i used the bottom plow to yank roots around the edges. every time i till, i increase the size of the garden a little bit. then i used the rototiller to chop it up. the area that has been tilled before was easy to do. the expansion area was a bit harder. but sitting on a tractor seat sure beats walking behind something when you find a root that the plow didn't get! i used to do the tilling with a 10 inch pulley on the big ten and it was a hassle. the hi-lo makes it so much easier! then i read the post by dentwizz and thought i would try out my tool bar and report on it. i think my bar is from an old walk behind(should i call something from the 50s old when i'm using stuff from the 60s?) two passes on the freshly rototilled ground


then two passes with the shovels on the bar


i can't get the bar to stay in train so it keeps crossing into the area already done. think i will just tie a rope to it to limit movement. all in all, i am a bit disappointed with the results. was hoping to get nicely shaped rows that i would be able to straddle with the tractor when it's time to weed. most likely, the problem is technique and lack of experience. i'll go back and try some more. and i will read that link that mortation posted before i put any seed in the ground.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

To make rows Day you need a cultivator like the one in the pics Kent posted, mounted to the rear hitch so it doesn't swing side to side. how far from Jacksonville do you live?
Link to comment
Share on other sites

between the time i posted last and now, i have been giving some thought to making a center mount cultivator. i have an old center grader hitch i can butcher(it's homemade) so i have a start. i was planning to go to the scrapyard this week anyway to get some flat bar to make some rear hitches; i have to switch my only hitch between the tool bar, the disc and the plow. Marty; google says 200 miles to jacksonville. i figure i'm 4 hours from home when i get to I-10 and I-95. a question related to this thread; after planting seed, should the ground be firmed down? the planters i've looked at at the tractor shows all have a wheel to push and pack the dirt. and i know grass seed gets rolled after spreading
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The device for that would be a culti-packer if I recall. sm01 I used to be a landscaper. The garden end is the new thing for me.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...