From corn to canola, new planter streamlines

Decatur, Ill. — The largest Great Plains planter equipped with the company’s new 5000 series row units was on display at Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Illinois.

The PL5800 is a 40-foot, bulk-fill with a telescoping tongue, which enables the planter to stay close to the tractor when working in the field. It also allows a quick fold to narrow transport widths.

“It’s really designed for specialty crops and speciality row spacing. The way we designed our toolbar it’s designed to fit all of your primary row spacing and row configurations allowing you to cover a wide variety of crops,” said Craig Hruska of Great Plains Manufacturing.

“Any of your twin row, so your 20-inch, your 30-inch twins, your 15-inch, and your 30-inch.”

He said the multiple row-spacing options, combined with the ability of the 5000 series row units to handle a wide variety of seeds, make the planter versatile.

The new PL5800 now has two fans, while previous Great Plains’ planters only had one.

“It uses one for your seed delivery and one for your meter pressure. It basically allows for a more precise and accurate controlling of your air,” Hruska said.

The air-pressure lines are located inside the planter’s main frame, which makes PL5800 look tidier compared to previous planters.

Growers can choose between a 82-bushel or 150-bu. tanks. The 82-bu. tank can be fitted with two side tanks for liquid fertilizer.

The 5000 series row units are driven by either hydraulics or by the optional individual row control (IRC) electric drive, which offers the benefit of variable-rate planting, turn compensation and section control.

The row units have 15-inch opener blades that are offset a half inch to improve performance in tough soil conditions.

The closing wheel arm has been shortened compared to precision row units to improve seed to soil contact when moving around curves.

“One thing that’s really nice about the 5000 series row unit is how easily you can change between your seed plates and your seed types. It’s basically just a quarter turn, pull your plate, put your new plate in and you’re ready to go.”

He said the row units can plant anything from corn to canola and everything in between.

Great Plains recently started to sell industrial hemp seed discs, including a five-cell disc designed for low seeding rates ranging from 2,000 to 5,000 seeds per acre, and a 30-cell disc that seeds from 6,000 to 45,000 seeds per acre.

Hruska said Great Plains has sold a canola disc for about 10 years.

“Each plate has 240 cells in it, and we’ve done the testing and you can singulate canola.”

He said planting speeds depend on the row unit, not the crop being planted.

“These seed tubes are designed to have a dead drop. That way, when your seed leaves your meter it’s going to have a clear drop straight through that tube, that way there is no contact with any of that tube. That way your seed spacing is going to be perfect every time,” Hruska said

“So you’ll have that dead drop at about 5.5 m.p.h.”

The 5000 series row units are available with pneumatically controlled cylinders that allow down pressure adjustment to be made while planting, multiple press wheel options, coulters, row-cleaners and Keeton seed firmers.

“The other big thing we have is a new X35 monitor with it (the PL5800),” Hruska said.

“The display screen has everything you need to know. It locks out all the features that are passive, that way you can’t change or adjust settings you don’t want to mess with while you’re out in the field.”

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