I have a 8 acre farm near Tirunelveli (Tamil Nadu). Currently I am developing only 4 acres divided into 1.5 acres for Multi-layer food forest (planted last month), 0.25 acres market garden (greens and vegetables), 1.5 acres grains (millets, pulses) and 1 acre Banana, Papaya and Fig and 0.5 acres SuperNapier ( I have a couple of Desi cows).
I have gone through quite a few older posts on Power tillers, but a few questions still remain and hence this post.
Now, I am in search for a suitable power tiller/weeder for the following operations:
- Ploughing land in case of grain cultivation (Rain-fed and minimum acreage ~2acres).
- Inter-cultivation between Trees - we have planted Mangoes, Mousambi, Coconuts and a host of timber value trees.
- Inter-cropping trees with annuals (at-least in the initial stages).
- Spraying Organic Insect Repellants.
- Trailer for ferrying compost within the farm.
- Preparing Permanent Raised Beds for bio-intensive vegetable farming (inspired from JM Fortier,Curtis Stone, Richard Perkins etc.). We would like to standardize bed sizes to 3ft width and 1ft pathways for documenting our inputs and yields.
I intend to increase the area of vegetable farming and multi-layer food forest in the future.
With these operations in mind, I would like a power tiller:
- Whose wheel width is small ~ 3ft and doesn’t weigh much. (This is my first year into farming , so I am not exactly accustomed to handling heavy machinery).
- Has implements which will reduce the labor requirement for the above mentioned activities.
- Reasonably priced (within 2L).
- Back Rotary type.
- Has minimal vibrations while using them.
I have done a bit of internet research and what I has impressed me the most is:
- BCS 742 (obvious choice for those who are into bio-intensive farming). 9HP Lombardini Engine
Implements: Rotary Plough, Roto-tiller.
It checks almost all the boxes but the price is very high. ~3.5L
- Varsha Power Weeder 9DEL. - 9HP
Implements: Soil lifter, Ditcher, 5-tine cultivator.
Reasonably prices at ~1.2L with interesting implements. Planning to drop by their field office to check them out.
- Sprayman 850/ Shaurya 732 - 9HP Honda/ Lombardini Engine
It is exactly like a BCS but a cheaper ~2L. Haven’t been able to get enough reviews online.
I have visited a local dealer and checked out VST Shakthi Models and Husqvarna. VST Tillers while they are multi-functional, their size is a bit of a worry especially in the case of usage in veg farming. If any of you own/ have used power tillers, kindly share me your experiences. Experts, advise please !