The stereotype of a farmer is someone standing on their porch, blade of grass in between teeth, looking out onto the acres of crops they’ve planted as it grows. However, the truth of the matter is that farming, even on a small scale, is hard work. There is rarely time to gaze upon the wonder of what you’ve created. There are always chores to be done and tasks to take care of.
The thing about farming is that while it is a physically demanding profession, it always requires a lot of equipment to make it work. There is simply too much that is impossible without the help of machinery and tools. In fact, farmers spend a lot of time considering and deciding on which are the most valuable to invest in. Here are the most essential prices of machinery for farmers.
If you’re going to have a farm, then you will need at least one tractor. There are virtually no modern farms that exist without one. A tractor is a jack of all trades for your farm. It can handle a multitude of duties and is useful in every aspect of the growing cycle. You can use a tractor for hoeing, planting, plowing, cultivating, and harvesting. You can also use it to tow other equipment and move heavy items. Whether you have a single acre or you have several thousand, you will need a tractor on your farm. In the old days, horses would have handled the work that tractors do, but you can do a lot more with horsepower.
Farming often involves a lot of digging. That’s where the backhoe comes into play. With a backhoe, you can dig holes and place the removed dirt into a loader for easy removal. Smaller ones can handle holes up to ten feet deep, but you can also buy or rent ones that go much deeper if you need them. They are not just for digging. With different attachments, you can drill holes, such as for fence posts, or even clear debris. They provide a multitude of functions and will remain stable on uneven terrain.
A front-end loader is an attachment for your tractor. It is a valuable piece of equipment that can hold debris, push large objects out of the way, and even help with soil cultivation. They are very useful on smaller farms that need to maximize the use they get out of the tractor. Front-end loaders can remove trash and debris and even help to move heavy equipment around rather than try to roll or place it in a truck.
You might think that a forklift is more appropriate for a warehouse or yard, but it is an essential tool to have on a farm. A forklift will help you move large and heavy items wherever you need to go. This includes when you are shipping out your delicious product or just moving other equipment. One of the best things you can get with your forklift is a forklift trailer hitch. It gets scooped up easily by the forks and can be attached to a trailer without the operator having to leave the seat. Then the trailer can be moved to the new location. It can move trailers full of equipment, products that aren’t on pallets yet, or a job trailer for a work location away from your main area.
As the name would suggest, a cultivator is used to cultivate the soil. Cultivating the soil means preparing soil beds before planting. It removes weeds and other debris so that it will not negatively affect what you are trying to grow. With a cultivator, you can not only turn over the soil and get it ready but also space out your bed lines appropriately for any given crop. Once plants start to grow, you can also use a cultivator in between those growing lines to continue removing weeds, however, you need to be very skilled to do it without damaging your crops.
It is impossible to picture a farmer without a truck. Farm trucks perform a number of duties on a farm, from transporting people and equipment to pulling trailers filled with product. A good truck helps you move around your farm quickly and efficiently while also helping with loading and delivering your products in town. Trucks are also great for towing livestock over distances and bringing supplies to the far reaches of your property.
While a cultivator does the final preparations before you start planting, a plow turns over and loosens the soil prior to that. Some plows are meant to handle plots that have never been cultivated before, and some that will refresh and renew land that has previously been planted on. The importance of a plow is that it will bring up fresh, untouched soil from under the top layer that is nutrient-rich and ideal for what you want to plant.
A harvester is used on grain farms. It efficiently removes the crops from the soil and carries them back to where they need to go for further processing. They are much more efficient than hand-picking and can save you incredible amounts of time and energy. Of course, you don’t necessarily need a harvester if you have grain crops, but you will recoup your investment very quickly when what used to take you days can suddenly take you minutes or hours.
There are approximately 2 million farms in the United States. Each one has different needs, different crops, and are different sizes. However, certain pieces of machinery are common to most of them. If you are starting a farm, or aren’t sure what equipment you are missing for your established one, then check out this list for ideas.