Rocky Mountain Equipment in Vegreville, Alta., has carried the Magnation Rainbolt for two years, said Vegreville store manager David Sen, adding that they tested the equipment for a year before committing to selling the unusual devices.
“The main unit for farmers around here is the Rainbolt for seed treatment. We’ve probably sold ten or more of those. Guys who have them say there’s a definite benefit,” Sen said in an interview, adding that none of the units he’s sold are being used for slurry.
“We’ve seen really good results in crops. In wheat, guys are getting three pounds heavier bushel weight. Up here, we always have too short of a growing season. Producers are finding their Rainbolt treated seed advances the crop so they can have an earlier harvest. You can visually see the benefit in a dry year. Roots on the treated crop go deeper for moisture.”
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The Barenbrug seed company is Tangent, Oregon conducted germination tests comparing Rainbolt treated seed to non-treated seed. Germination of the non-treated seed was 89 percent. Germination of the turbulated seed was 98 percent.
He says some colonies are using the system for slurry, and irrigators in the Taber area are conditioning their water with the Rainbolt. Sen says water in his surrounding area has a lot of calcium, so the smaller Rainbolt designed for household water treatment is gaining in popularity.
“We have a guy who had a water softener and a filter, but he still got a major calcium buildup on everything. After we installed a Rainbolt, he was able to take out the softener and filter. He is rid of all that white residue. Just clean water.
“It’s not that expensive compared to a softener and filter system. And you’re done with hauling salt. Depending on what’s in your water, a typical household Rainbolt costs about $1,500.”