EarthWay Seeder Combination Results in Better Flower Seeding

An innovative approach by an Ohio flower farm, in which he built a 4-row Earthway Seeder, meant faster seeding and transplanting of sunflowers.

| September/October 2014

  • Steve Adams ganged four Earthway seeders into a single four-row unit.
    Photo courtesy FARM SHOW
  • The ganged Earthways feature a PVC spacer that allows for sunflower planting spaced at 10 inches between rows.
    Photo courtesy FARM SHOW

Steve Adams ganged four Earthway seeders into a single four-row unit for seeding and transplanting. It provided a big boost in productivity for Adams and his wife, Gretel, who raise and sell fresh flowers at Sunny Meadows Flower Farm in Columbus, Ohio.

“I was planting sunflowers in 300-foot beds with four rows per bed for about 48,000 row feet of sunflowers in total,” says Adams. “That meant walking each bed four times. I had one seeder and was given another when I realized that for a few hundred dollars, I could cut out three trips on each bed.”

Adams bought the two additional Earthways he needed. He removed the front and rear axles and replaced them with 4-foot lengths of 3⁄8-inch all-thread rod. PVC spacers gave him a consistent 10-inch space between rows. He then removed the handles, eliminating one and reattaching the other three so each handle spanned two machines. All three handles were then connected with a row-marker rod cut to fit.

“Ganging the seeders made them more stable,” Adams explains. “With one, if you hit a rock or a hard clump of dirt, it jumps. With four together, that doesn’t happen.”

The couple wanted to move to cultivating with a tractor-mounted unit. The ganged seeder not only sped up planting, it left uniform spacing, making mechanical cultivation possible.

“Since ganging the seeders, I changed everything over to four-row beds,” says Adams. “I use the ganged Earthway seeders to mark the beds for transplants.”

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