Good Practices, IPM (Integrated Pest Management)

Putting the crunch on weed seed (IPMNetNews)

01 Jun 2012

IPMNetNews n°195 (issue soon available online) describes the HSD (standing for “Harrington Seed Destructor”), a farmer-invented device which “collects both straw and chaff discharged by the harvester (combine), passes the former directly through back to the ground surface, while diverting chaff and any carried weed seed to a counter-rotating cage mill that thoroughly grinds the chaff and seed into a powdery dust thereby effectively destroying the seed”.

This machine “supports the important elements of preventing weed seed bank build-up, decreasing the need for herbicide treatment, reducing the potential for developing weed resistance to herbicides, while still maintaining grain crop straw to improve soil and moisture conditions”

However, some issues have to be addressed : the trailed HSD requires fuel and the trailer produces some soil compaction. In addition “the effect, if any, of the created dust on plants, animals, and humans has not been reported to date”

Read description (in English) on the site of the Australian University which promotes the project.