strate­gic strikes

Cro­p­lands WEEDit trailed sprayer range lights up fallow pad­docks around Aus­tralia

Farms & Farm Machinery - - SPECIAL FEATURE: PRECISION AG -

Aus­tralian-owned agri­cul­tural spray equip­ment man­u­fac­turer Cro­p­lands has re­cently launched the WEEDit trailed sprayer range in Western Aus­tralia.

More than 5,000 WEEDit sen­sors have been sold in the east­ern states since it adopted the tech­nol­ogy from Europe in 2013.

The WEEDit op­ti­cal spot spray tech­nol­ogy uses near-in­frared tech­nol­ogy to de­tect the chloro­phyll in liv­ing plants. Once de­tected, an elec­tronic sig­nal is sent to a solenoid and the ap­pro­pri­ate noz­zle is se­lected to spray the weed.

WEEDit’s auto-cal­i­bra­tion en­sures op­ti­mum per­for­mance is main­tained, day or night, re­gard­less of soil type and stub­bles.

Cro­p­lands be­lieves its spray sys­tems not only max­imise the ef­fi­ciency of the WEEDit sen­sors, but with­stand the rigours of Aus­tralian broad­acre con­di­tions.

Its op­ti­cal spot sprayers are now in use by some of Aus­tralia’s lead­ing broad­acre farm­ers to im­prove the ef­fi­ciency of their her­bi­cide spray­ing. Farm­ers re­port chem­i­cal sav­ings, low­er­ing of weed seed banks and re­tained soil mois­ture while also com­bat­ing hard-to-kill weeds.

Queens­land agron­o­mist An­drew John­ston, from the Dalby re­gion, where many farm­ers are us­ing Cro­p­lands WEEDit op­ti­cal spot sprayers as part of their fallow spray­ing op­er­a­tion, says they are see­ing sig­nif­i­cant re­sults.

“It’s the tool we use with our cus­tomers to tar­get spe­cific weeds at spe­cific times,” John­ston says. “It means we don’t have to be on pad­dock im­me­di­ately, WEEDit pro­vides flex­i­bil­ity to hold off spray­ing for a short pe­riod and tar­get the weeds at ideal times.

“WEEDit al­lows us to strate­gi­cally man­age pad­docks when con­trol­ling feath­er­top. We don’t look at blan­ket ap­pli­ca­tions; in­stead we look at more strate­gic mixes with dif­fer­ent chemistries.”

Cro­p­lands dual tank, dual spray line, high ca­pac­ity op­ti­cal spot sprayer known as the WEEDit 7000, en­com­passes a 7,000-litre main tank with 800-litre flush­ing tank and 1,500-litre hot tank.

The hot tank is used to hold high-con­cen­tra­tion chem­i­cals specif­i­cally for spot spray­ing – the se­cret weapon for com­bat­ing hard to kill weed and thus de­lay­ing the on­set of her­bi­cide re­sis­tance.

Cro­p­lands be­lieves its spray sys­tems not only max­imise the ef­fi­ciency of the WEEDit sen­sors, but with­stand the rigours of Aus­tralian broad­acre con­di­tions

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