12 April 2018

Villoruela: Sowing potatoes days

​Last summer, we spoke about harvesting potatoes tasks. On this occasion, we have had the great opportunity to talk again with our friend José María with the aim to know the most important items about sowing potatoes tasks... We start!

The seedbed preparation is really important before beginning to sow potatoes. The soil has to be very ground, so they use rotary harrows for that. The main goal is to avoid clods because they can damage the potatoes’ skin. Also, it is important when they have to harvest potatoes because if there are a lot of clods, the harvesting work is more difficult and potatoes could be damaged in the screening and cleaning process.

When the seedbed is ready to sow, they have to prepare seeds. In this sense, they can use different diameter (size), but 28mm-35mm, 35mm-45mm y 45mm-55mm are the most common. José María sows the smallest diameter (28mm-35mm) because he doesn't split potatoes. In Spain, "to split, or not split the seed of potatoes, that is the question"; this discussion is very typical. This fact is only performed in Spain and the main goal is to save money with seeds. Potatoes can grow without problem when they are split but farmers have the risk of transmitting diseases in the machine that is responsible for splitting. Normally, if farmer sows big diameter of seed, he has to split seed so he has to buy little seed and cheaper (small sizes are more expensive since they are more complicated to get) and seed are multiplied. The price of seed (small diameter) is about 1​.2 €/kg.

Regarding the dose of seeds, Jose María uses about 1.100 kg/he so it is about 42.000 potatoes/he with 28mm-35mm of diameter.​ Each kilogram of potatoes sowed usually produces about 45 kg ... more specifically each potato usually produce about 15 potatoes.

As you can see in Jose María's pictures, he uses a Grimme GL-34 planter of 4 rows with a hopper of 1,200 kg. He can sow about 10 he/day at 7 km/h. The distance between rows is 75cm and the potato is buried about 10cm. The planter Grimme has a system to inject a long-lasting insecticide to prevent potato beetles. This insecticide is effective in whole life of potato plants. The distance between rows is large because potatoes need an important area to grow. If potatoes are not buried, their skin is damaged by the sun and the environmental conditions and they will be green potatoes. Besides, the production is quite numerous as we have already commented.

This year the sowing tasks are being delayed due to the rains, so it will surely generate a loss of production since the cycle of the plants will be affected... they can’t delay harvesting tasks because they could have problems with meteorology in September or October.

The potatoes take about 20 days to grow up and until they are 15cm height they won't start to be watered ... we will talk about all these questions later.

Versión en español.

26 March 2018

New cultivators. Longer lasting

Whenever we visit the stand of Bellota Agrisolutions at FIMA, we get surprised. Without any doubt, it is one of the most interesting stands of this Farm Fair for all the novelties they present and for the pleasant and professional reception that we always have from the staff of Bellota. On this occasion, it was very interesting to learn about the new, longer-lasting cultivators, which guarantee a constant working width and angle of attack throughout the life of the cultivator. These pieces are very used by Spanish farmers so we think a lot of people would like to know them.

Bellota has redesigned the new 1512, 1513 and 1599 cultivators in order to last longer. Firstly, the sweeps have been reshaped so that the working width is maintained as they wear away with use. The wing of the cultivator, which is more than 4cm, guarantees that the piece will always have the same working width for homogenous tilling in the fields. The two sides reinforced, with a point more than 2.2cm thick and 8.5cm long, ensures not only that the piece lasts longer, but also that the angle of attack is maintained so that the point of the cultivator can always penetrate the soil properly, thus minimum effort is required to till the land. There models are available: 1512 and 1599 (with 47º angle of attack) and 1513 (with 35,5º angle of attack). These cultivators have a working widths of 18.5cm, 23cm or 27.5cm and they are painted in black epoxy.

The 1512 and 1599 model (with 47º working angle) will allow you to work with less working depth. If more working depth is required, the 1513 is recommended due to its 35.5° angle of attack. In addition to all that, they incorporate a new design so that the two screws, that fix the piece to the arm, are more protected against wear. Also, thanks to a new deeper countersink, the bolts will be always protected.

Therefore, the two most important characteristics to take into account would be:
  • More constancy. The reshaped wings have a constant (18.5cm, 23cm or 27.5cm) working width maintained as they wear away with use.
  • More precise.  With the two sides reinforced (with a point more than 2.2cm thick and 8.5cm long), not only the point is always sharp but also the sweep lasts longer.

Versión en español.



13 March 2018

Arbos displays all its power in Spain!!

In the last edition of FIMA 2018, the Lovol Arbos Group showed all its power with a fantastic stand in FIMA with the aim of showing all tractors and implements. Besides, Arbos took the opportunity to launch its new 7000 Series. Arbos (Italian manufactured) has a range of power on its tractor from 40HP to 260HP. Regarding tractors, also Arbos exhibited other interesting tractors like 4111Q narrow (with low cabin for fruit trees) and the 4100E (isodiametric tractor).

Therefore, the range of tractors offered by Arbos for Spanish farmers are the following ones:
  • 7000 Series. Model 7260 (definitive version).
  • 5000 Series. Models 5100, 5115 and 5130 with Global and Advanced versions.
  • 4000 Series. Models 4060, 4070, 4080, 4090, 4100 y 4110. Narrow, isodiametric, with different configurations (E, F, F PRO, AF and Q) tractors. A large range for specialized crops.
  • 3000 Series. Models 3040 and 3050. Narrow tractors that are ideal for greenhouses and nurseries.

We could see 5000 Series tractors in Demoagro 2017 where they were working at full capacity. Our feeling was positive but we need more working hours to have a good final opinion. We are confident that we will work with them in the future because this Series is being sold for a few months ago. The 7000 Series is going to be delivered in first months of next year. We would like to work with it to see how its FTP engine works and know great performances of this new tractor.

Nevertheless Arbos is not only tractors. With regard to implement, Arbos has a full line with tools in soil cultivations, drilling, planting and crop protection. All implements were showed but we would like to highlight the Blaster trailer sprayer of 4,000 litres, 36 metres of working width and directional axle, the launched of new seed drill called MEK-X 300 (direct sowing or minimum tillage) and the award-winning technical novelty in FIMA 2018 called Magicsem 3D that allows your monogram planter to work up to 20km/h. In FIMA 2018, we were able to see the full range of implements that undoubtedly have an extraordinary look. Italian implements of the prestigious manufacturer Martermacc Company.

Arbos range implements are listed below: