Saturday, February 11, 2012

February 2012 : Subsoiler

Here is a photo of our new ripper. It's a rather rugged piece of equipment weighing in at 248 pounds. It has a 24" working depth and will shatter hard panned soil. Usually these implements are known as subsoilers but this also rips tree roots. Yikes, hence the name, ripper.

Soil health has always been a passion of mine and I have read several books on the topic. My favorite book is Building Soil for Better Crops. Once our soil was limed to the appropriate pH to the appropriate depth we minimized our tillage practices. We plow occassionally to make raised beds and turn under cash crop or cover crop residues but work the soil as little as possible.

But about 12" beneath the surface there has always been significant soil compaction. This was the year we vowed to correct this final soil deficiency.

So off to Earth Tools website I went, happy I would finally buy another implement, a subsoiler, for our beloved two wheel tractor. But I was greeted by a note that the subsoilers were temporarily unavailable to fit BCS -- undergoing redesign.

That started me on a detour that, well, let's just say, was the scenic route. Three months later we have a subsoiler and then some. We also have a new-to-us four wheel tractor.