Salford tillage equipment opens up the soil
I met Dave Havelange who was showing the Salford tillage equipment at the Oahe Farm and Ranch Show. The vertical tillage equipment has distinctive baskets on the back to break up the soil. Based in Salford, Ontario, the company has a production plant in Osceola, Iowa.
“We’ve been in sandy ground, hard-to-handle ground, soil bank, some ground that has not been touched for many years, gumbo and thick black heavy dirt,” Havelange said. “The baskets are used in all types of soils.”
He said that there is more and more demand for their equipment. A lot of machines are run on fields in Canada, Montana and North Dakota. In South Dakota, there are a lot east of Pierre.
Havelange said he’s had people come up to him at shows and say, “Man, if not for the Salford, wouldn’t have gotten a crop in for quite a few years.“
In the spring, he says the equipment dries out the topsoil. “They run it 2 to 3 inches deep,” said Havelange. “What that does is crack open the topsoil and gives the soil a chance to breathe. It can be wetter than wet and within 4 hours, the farmer can be in there seeding.”
In the fall, it works the opposite way. The device opens up the residue and gets the bacteria started. It’ll fracture the soil, leave cracks, which allows moisture to go down instead of run off.
Some guys who have been strictly no-till in the western part of the state were having a terrible time trying to drill crops into fields with heavy residue. He took out a machine, and they liked what it did. They even had their conservation people come out to see what the machine could do.
As an example, here’s info from their website salfordmachine.com: The I-4100 is the most aggressive machine in the Salford Independent series. This machine combines two rows of shallow concave disc blades followed by two rows of coulters on the same frame. Blades are spaced 7.5″ apart. The front two rows of concave blades are spaced 15″ apart and the coulters split that spacing to reduce density between the disc blades. The I-4100 performs best as fall residue management machine and for incorporating heavy product. The additional tillage action of the disc blades mixes more soil with residue to further accelerate decomposition.