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7 features automating planting

If it has been a few years since you’ve shopped for a planter, a whole new generation of automated features awaits you. Here are just a few of the latest technologies that are automating the task of planting corn and soybeans. You'll see examples of each of these in our January issue.

  1. Automatic swath control: Also called section- or point-row control, the technology automatically interrupts the flow of seed being planted to prevent planting of the same ground twice.
  2. Automatic down-force control: Puts even down pressure on planter row units to ensure uniform seed depth across the width of the planter for optimum seed placement.
  3. Automatic ground hardness sensor: Measures hardness of the soil on-the-go and makes depth adjustments just before the seed is planted. 
  4. Variable-rate planting: System that automatically adjusts seeding rates based on GPS field maps of soil properties and yield history.
  5. Varied-hybrid planting: System that varies the type of seed planted based on GPS field maps of soil properties and yield history.
  6. Bin-level monitoring: Measures seed levels in seed tanks and shuts down delivery when bin is full.
  7. Implement steering: GPS-based control system that guides the planter down the row with sub-inch precision to keep seed and fertilizer placement on track.