Dan Anderson, “In the Shop” blogger and Farm Journal columnist, has taken part in nearly 40 planting season as a farmer or equipment dealership mechanic.
He advises that you shouldn’t let the excitement of getting in the field for the first time each spring provoke planting mistakes that jeopardize yields from the get-go.
Here’s today’s first-day planting mistake. (Check back for the next few days to find his full top 10 list of planting mistakes.)
Worn disk openers allow dirt clods and crumbles to fall into seed furrows and disrupt seed depth. Uneven seed depth causes uneven emergence. Check seed meters by turning individual units by hand several full revolutions and looking for seeds ejected as doubles or triples. Some vacuum meters have plastic windows that allow operators to see whether seed disks are picking up and delivering doubles or dropping seeds and creating skips in the furrow.