A commercial, no-till row planter was extensively modified for use in direct seeding of hardwood tree species in surface mine reclamation. A pneumatic seed metering system was designed, fabricated, and mounted on the planter frame.

The metering device was tested under laboratory conditions which simulated varying terrain slope and field speed with seeds of various hardwood tree species. Metering efficiencies of 97% were achieved for pin oak seeds at 3.2 km/hr (2.0 m/h) and 50% slope. For red oak, 97% efficiency was achieved for 50% slope at 4.0 km/h (2.5 mph). Unsatisfactory metering was noted during tests of larger seeds, namely bur oak and black walnut.

The planter performed satisfactorily in field tests on a regraded sandstone/shale strip mine spoil material with an established vegetative cover. The metering device delivered approximately 95% of expected seed density when operated on a mild slope (≤ 10%) at a relatively slow speed 2.4 km/hr (or 1.5 miles/hr) using red oak seed. Penetration problems encountered in these tests were rectified by installing a 117 cm (46 in.) parabolic ripper tine.

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Published in Applied Engineering in Agriculture, v. 6, issue 2, p. 239-243.

© 1990 American Society of Agricultural Engineers

The copyright holder has granted the permission for posting the article here.

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This investigation was conducted in connection with a project of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station and was funded in part by a grant from the Kentucky Institute of Mining and Minerals Research.

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This document is published with the approval of the Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station as Paper No. 86-2-108.