Seedbed Integrity and Field Finish
The "Pop Can" Test
The "pop can" consists of a straight edge laid across the peaks of the field rows, and a pop can laid into the furrow to give a visual reference of the distance between the bottom of the seed row and the top of the ridges. The chart below compares typical field finishes with various side-bander seeding systems and the Bourgault Seeding System for furrow depth, as well as overall field residue management.
Field Finish - Side-banding Systems
Side-banding systems have been proven to be difficult to operate in a wide range of conditions and efficient seeding speeds and still maintain a high quality seedbed. Side-bander systems such as double shoot boots, paired row openers and dual knife systems will leave poor seed placement because of the way they fracture the soil, making uniform seed placement impossible. This is evident by the rough, lumpy fields that are common with side-banding systems. Because of this tendency, farmers who use side-banding systems commonly limit operating speeds to approximately 4½ mph in an attempt to improve field finish. Another common fix is to remove or burn the straw from the previous year in order to make the field passable.
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Pop Can Test - Dual Knife - Side Bander
Pop Can Test - Dual Knife Side-Bander
Field Finish - Dual Knife Side-Bander
Field Finish - Dual Knife Side-Bander
Pop Can Test - Double Shoot Side-Band
Pop Can Test - Double Shoot Boot Side-Bander
Side-banding Field Finish:
  • High soil disturbance caused by the wide opener or leading fertilizer knife may cause poor seed depth consistency and/or fertilizer separation
  • Disturbed soil may be thrown to other seed rows, causing uneven seed depth.
  • Deep furrows will cause undue stress on subsequent equipment such as swathers, sprayers and combines
  • Straw piles will cause uneven germination, dead spots, and again additional problems for spraying, swathing, and harvest.
  • In dry years, the deeper the furrows, the more soil surface is exposed to evaporation.
Pop Can Test - Dual Knife Side-Bander
Field Finish - Dual Knife Side Bander
Field Finish - Dual Knife Side-Bander
Field Finish - Bourgault Seeding Systems with Mid Row Banders®
The Bourgault Seeding System with Mid Row Banders® allows producers to use a narrow seed opener, while the mid row coulter applies all the nitrogen down between every other seed row. A minimal amount of soil is disturbed in order to get the seed and fertilizer into the soil. Producers have a wide range of selection for seed openers and packers to best suit their particular operation. The coulters of the Mid Row Banders® cut through residue, helping to minimize plugging and straw piles in the fields. Operators can typically achieve better field finish at higher seeding speeds than what is practical with a side-banding system.
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Pop Can Test - Bourgault Mid Row Bander Field
Pop Can Test - Bourgault Mid Row Bander Field
Pop Can Test - Bourgault Mid Row Bander Field
Field Finish - Bourgault Mid Row Bander Field
Field Finish - Bourgault Mid Row Bander Field
Mid Row Bander® Field Finish:
  • Low soil disturbance with a narrow seed opener and coulter fertilizer bander promotes even seed depth.
  • Low soil disturbance reduces soil throw onto adjacent seed rows.
  • Shallow furrows will minimize the stress on swathers, sprayers, combines and farmers.
  • Cutting action of the coulter, with good flow around narrow seed openers will leave even residue placement for even germination and crop protection.
  • Reduced soil surface to the sun helps lock in critical moisture in the dry seasons.
Field Finish - Bourgault Mid Row Bander
Field Finish - Bourgault Mid Row Bander Field
Superior Emergence - Bourgault Seeding System
Superior Emergence - Bourgault Seeding System