Aitchison No-Till Drill
If you are over-seeding pastures or hayfields, there is no better no-till drill than Aitchison. Most other drills are designed to sow soybeans approximately 1.5" deep in high-residue corn stalks. The ideal soil coverage for most seeds being sown in pastures is 1/4" to 3/8" deep. When over-seeding pastures or hayfields, there is usually 0.5" to 1" or more of variance in the levelness of the field in a 3' to 5' run. It is impossible for the drills that have their depth/press wheels set 1.5' behind the seed delivery to maintain a consistent depth. Possibly over 50% of the small seeds will be too deep or on top of the ground. The Deere 750 Series has more positive depth control, but many owners report that, in many situations, the seed is still buried too deep because the drill is so heavy. Most seeding failures are due to seeds covered with too much soil or left on top of the ground.
The Aitchison Boot
The vibrating tine with the Aitchison boot creates a smear-free, cocoon-shaped mini seedbed. Competing plants have their roots pruned while the inverted T-slot mixes the seeds with the soil. The seeds may be placed 1.5" deep in the inverted T-slot where more moisture is available; however, the seed is consistently covered with only 1/4" to 3/8" of finely tilled soil.
(Click to Enlarge)
The key that makes the Aitchison completely different is the special design of the Aitchison boot. The bottom surface of the boot compresses a column of soil underneath the seed, which creates a "wick" to conduct moisture upwards. The unique inverted T-shaped slot retains up to eight times more moisture and three times more oxygen than other planting systems, while offering superior seed germination. The loose, tilth-like soil deposited over the seed with the Aitchison system is a poor water conductor and acts as a barrier to stop moisture from evaporating from the seedbed. Seed savings can be 25% or greater over other drills due to improved emergence. This fact is supported by independent trial results.
The Aitchison no-till drill is designed to last for many years with low maintenance. Because there are no pivot points, bushings, or bearings (with the exception of the optional coulters), the drill performs equally well many years later. The Aitchison is the ideal drill to cost-share with fellow graziers. In selected areas, dealerships are available.