The Kverneland ECOMAT has been around for a long time but, to date, has failed to make inroads. Confusion about its exact role in today’s tillage has not helped.
The introduction of a new on-land, 10-furrow version had it placed in a prominent position on the Kverneland stand, however.
The shallow plough can work at depths from 6cm to 18cm, and is potentially much more fuel, power and labour efficient than a standard plough.
With concerns about grassweeds and very shallow tillage in wet conditions, it just may be that shallow ploughs have a role to play in our climate.
Results with shallow ploughing
The Teagasc team at Oak Park have had good results with shallow ploughing. The simple belief that inversion is ‘bad’ and non-inversion is ‘good’ is not accurate. In terms of carbon footprint, tillage depth, coupled with intensity, are important.
Many growers are already min-tilling to 15cm deep; by using a shallow plough, we may get better weed control and drier soils in the autumn than non-inversion systems.
The 10-furrow unit displayed can work from 3m to 5m wide, depending on furrow setting, but requires a lift-capacity of 8t in this format.
The on-land format suits very wide tyres and large tractors. Other manufacturers had shallow ploughs on display also.