Last week I had been talking about using biodegradable mulch film, but for laying it on the field I needed a machine, which costs £5000, and the machine looks pretty simple, so I made one out of a old frame I had sitting around, a set of wheels and two pairs of skimming discs, and weekend I tried it out on a couple of rows and it worked fantastic.
And on Monday I started using it proper to get about 2 acres done and yes I had no hiccups and had it all done in a couple of hours, a job that had taken days before laying all the polythene by hand.
So after that working well, I had decided it was time to build another machine more making the holes and a easier way for us planting the courgette and Pumpkin plants, I had a old roller and welded 4 metal squares on. So when they are rolling round will punch holes in the mulch and leaving a hole in the earth for us to plant our Courgettes in. and attached to the roller I made up brackets that will go onto a old 2 seater planter we used to use before we had the planter for the tractor.
This we used on Thursday and it worked fantastic, we me and Rab planted all of the Courgettes two thousand of them, in one hour, before it used to take three of us a whole day to do that amount.
So the planting of the Courgette and Pumpkins which used to take us two weeks to do including laying the polythene by hand we had to punch twelve thousand holes by hand with a bulb holer then plant each one by hand, the job will now take two days.
Now I wish I had looked into this years ago, but the reason for me looking at it this year is that we started planting two weeks later this year and I knew that everything would come on at the same time, so I knew we needed to be able to plant the Courgette and Pumpkins faster but didn’t want to spend thousands on a machine,and I wanted to get away from using polythene in the field.
Both machine's have done there job fantastic and the total price came to £272 for metal and bolts.
This week's work is now all about finishing of a wee bit of planting in the field, re planting inside the tunnels and we now need to get the brush weeder out and get weeding the fields and the bed weeder will be out very soon for the dreaded hand weeding.