Maize grown in twin rows with optimal allocation of growing space, are the advantages claimed for the Lemken Azurit precision seed drill and now modern technology, made by Steketee, adds another dimension to the DeltaRow system.

Machines produced by this Dutch specialist adds hoeing technology which has been proven under trials at the University of Applied Sciences of South Westphalia. There, the mechanical weed control in maize was performed using a Steketee EC-Weeder equipped with finger hoes and harrows as hoeing tools. Ridging shares were additionally deployed to complete the pass.

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Positive effects were confirmed in all parts of the trial, however the harrow proved to be particularly effective for controlling weeds in the early growth stages, as it ripped out and then buried the weeds.

With a precisely set Steketee hoe, weeds were efficiently controlled from the time shoots are just emerging through to the cotyledon leaf stage. The maize plants withstood the mechanical load well even at the three-leaf stage, resulting in very low crop losses, said Lemken.

Compared to the finger hoe, the harrow had the benefit of also working on a section in between the twin rows. Ridging around maize plants using ridging shares also proved to be an effective step in combating larger weeds up to the five and six-leaf stage. Depending on the operating speed, share width and condition of the soil, efficiencies of 85% and above were achieved as a result.

A smart camera system ensured reliable control at all stages of growth. It can be set to twin row mode for young plants, or single row mode for the final pass with large plants, depending on crop height. Conventional farms additionally have the option to combine hoeing between the rows with band spraying in the rows.