Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    20

    Default Dwarf tree apple orchard, need equipment

    I am signing a lease on a small apple orchard, about a half-acre, with 50 dwarf rootstock apple trees. The trees are in clumps and rows, not very orderly with the layout. Being dwarf, and structurally pruned for production, they have a wide branching habit with the main laterals just a few feet off the ground. They're also quite close together, so in some places, there may only be 6 feet of head height.

    Here are some pictures so you can see what it looks like:


    Dwarf trees planted too close together by natjwest, on Flickr


    Quite overgrown field by natjwest, on Flickr


    Nat and Jeff discuss by natjwest, on Flickr

    My immediate need is for a piece of equipment to clear brush and cut long field grass. It hasn't been cut yet this year so where the deer and people haven't trampled it down, the grass is head height. It's mostly grass-type, not woody, but some blackberries and other brambles. There are some hidden stumps and fence posts and trellis/espalier wires to contend with. I have never done this kind of work before (on this scale) so don't know the right kind of mower for the job.

    Would a "brush mower" like this work?
    Brush Cutter Mower

    I used to have a BCS 730 with Kohler 8hp, now I regret selling it. (At least I sold it for exactly what I paid for it used.) With that machine, I would have added a brush mower or sickle bar.

    Not only for now, but for ongoing, would a sickle bar or brush mower be the better tool for managing the orchard ground?

    The next step up would be a small tractor, but I fear not being able to get under and between the trees. If I were to step up to a tractor, I would want a front loader, but that's too pricey.

    What's the best tool for this job? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Elite Member woodlandfarms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,251
    Location
    Los Angeles / SW Washington
    Tractor
    PowerTrac 1850

    Default Re: Dwarf tree apple orchard, need equipment

    We have a 30 tree mixed variety orchard. I am going to suggest something unconventional for you.. A power Trac 425 or 1430. Power-Trac.com. Very very maneuverable and hugely versatile.

    Carl
    Power-Trac 1850, grapple, hoe, 90" mower, 72" box blade

  3. #3
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: Dwarf tree apple orchard, need equipment

    Hi Carl, great idea. And indeed a tractor might be in the future. But it's only a half-acre so very hard to justify it. In the short/immediate term I need something affordable used.

  4. #4
    Elite Member woodlandfarms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,251
    Location
    Los Angeles / SW Washington
    Tractor
    PowerTrac 1850

    Default Re: Dwarf tree apple orchard, need equipment

    Buy a stihl weedwacker and enjoy the exercise. Honestly. When we bought our 40 just north of you I used one with a metal brush blade and cleared at least 4 acres of blackberries. Still use it all the time. There are bad metal blades and good ones. Don't buy stihls but look for 3 rd party ones sold for the logging industry.
    Power-Trac 1850, grapple, hoe, 90" mower, 72" box blade

  5. #5
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: Dwarf tree apple orchard, need equipment

    Hey Carl, thanks for the idea. It made me realize I really should get a trimmer regardless of any larger equipment purchase. I'll need it for trimming around the trees and along the fencelines and other property edges.

    And to completely solve my problem, I sent an email to the fellow who bought my BCS 830 a year ago and he still has it, and is willing to sell it back to me. So I'll dump the tiller box and get a sickle or brush mower, combined with a trimmer with brush head and I'll have the ultimate combo. Having the BCS is perfect since I'll use it for dragging a trailer around the site, possibly a chipper/shredder too.

Similar Threads

  1. apple tree
    By stevess in forum Rural Living
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 04-30-2010, 07:49 AM
  2. 240 year old Elm Trees
    By WayneB in forum Rural Living
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 01-11-2010, 10:07 PM
  3. Equipment Used In Tree Harvesting.
    By Gunfighter in forum Photos
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 01-24-2003, 03:38 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
© 2014 TractorByNet.com. TractorByNet is a registered trademark of IMC Digital Universe, Inc. Other trademarks on this page are the property of their respective owners.