At this time of year paddock maintenance activities are very weather dependent. Not much is growing, many sites are too wet and boggy to get any heavy machinery on, and a cold snap is likely to scupper any plans to do major works.
However, it won’t be long before you can get out in your paddocks and start improving the land for grazing. In fact, if you use a compact tractor you can probably get a head start on your neighbours, especially if they rely on heavier machinery to get their paddock maintenance jobs done.
While many landowners and smallholders get by with a quad bike and attachments, a compact tractor is generally a lot more versatile and powerful. They can be used with a comprehensive range of farm implements and machinery, are just as manoeuvrable as a quad, and are light so can be used in conditions where conventional tractors are too heavy.
Most of all, as well as being highly versatile, they save you time.
It’s really quick and easy to hitch up a harrow or mower to your compact tractor and get out in your paddocks. When you get an opportunity – a dry morning or just a couple of spare hours – you can get jobs started and finished without much forward planning or effort. They also do the job properly.
Compact tractors have 3 point linkage so they exert force on the ground and can lift. This means that for jobs like harrowing, a framed or tined tractor harrow pushes into the ground rather just being dragged, making them far more effective than a quad harrow attachment.
There are also some great products out there for the smallholder or estate owner with a compact tractor. Lightweight and robust farm implements like the Italian designed and manufactured Agrint machines, can be used with compact and sub compact tractors and are very popular with landowners in the UK. The range provides you with everything you need for paddock maintenance too.
With this in mind, what jobs should you be thinking about over the next 6 months?
Seasonal Paddock Maintenance Jobs
Fast forward to spring, which isn’t so far away. This is the time for harrowing and rolling.
As explained above, framed harrows can be used to greater affect on a compact tractor but drag harrows are also a useful addition to any smallholder or landowners’ inventory. Harrowing removes dead thatch, aerates the soil, improves drainage and removes clods and molehills.
You can read more about harrowing here.
After harrowing, paddocks benefit from being given a once over with a roller. This will help level out the paddock and compact the soil. A compact tractor with a roller will also improve ‘poached’ areas of the paddock, although this job needs to wait if your paddock is very wet.
From late spring into summer you’ll want to start mowing. How, when and how often will depend on the conditions of your paddocks, and how much use they get. Most paddocks require regular topping to encourage regrowth of grass and discourage unwanted weeds like nettles and thistles. A flail mower will also mulch overgrown areas and brambles, and they’re a good general mower if you have a variety of grass cutting requirements.
To find out more about different mowers and their uses click here.
Of course the attachments available for most compact tractors are not confined to paddock maintenance, there are farm implements that will do any number of jobs on smallholdings, equestrian centres, estates and for groundworks.
For people looking to purchase new farm implements the Agrint range of machines are highly recommended. These are lightweight, compact and robust, and can be used with standard compact tractors and smaller sub-compact tractors. The range includes mowers, rotovators and bio shredders, providing everything a smallholder or estate owner might need.
You can view our range of Agrint implements here.
If you want to discuss any of the subjects covered above, or get advice about compact tractors and attachments, get in touch with our team. We are always happy to talk through your options, provide advice, or arrange a demonstration. Call 01420 520510 or email firstname.lastname@example.org