Berta Rotary Plow
The Rotary Plow is a highly effective “primary tillage” implement, capable of penetrating sod 12” deep in ONE PASS; it’s side-discharge nature also makes it very popular for building raised beds. This tool was pioneered on a walk-behind tractor by the Gravely® company many years ago…it was effective, but the front–PTO design of the Gravely® tractors made operation of this tool rather dangerous. The Berta Company of Italy has refined the design and made the plow applicable as a rear-PTO implement for most European walk-behind tractors. Putting the rotary plow in the rear of the tractor improved the handling immeasurably (always better to PULL a load than to push it! That’s why trailers are behind vehicles…). BCS now purchases the Berta rotary plow and brands it as their own implement: the “GroundBlaster”. The paint job and the name are different, but it is exactly the same tool.
The plow works 8-10” wide per pass, but unlike a tiller, there is no such thing as a ‘second pass’ with a Rotary Plow to achieve extra depth, so it more than makes up for it’s narrow working width in the fact that it only has to go over the ground ONCE to get to it’s full working depth. (EXCEPTION: In some highly-compacted soils, a second pass may be needed to achieve full depth…this is rare.) The cutting tips on the bottoms of the plow blades are reversible in 4 positions to achieve maximum life, and easily and inexpensively replaceable when worn out completely.
We carry two versions of the Rotary Plow:
–Single version: Shown in photos below, Discharges soil to right side. Most popular due to cost and weight; good for relatively flat and square/rectangular plots. Weighs 95 lbs. –Swivel (reversible) version: Has two plowshare rotors which turn opposite directions; gearbox mounted on perfectly-balanced swivel, so it can be instantly “flipped” and right OR left discharge can be achieved. Designed for hillside work and terracing when soil needs to be thrown uphill or downhill only; also good for lots of odd-shaped plots. VERY HEAVY (150 lbs.)—requires front weight for tractor to properly counter-balance plow.
Berta Swivel plow, in LH-discharge position
Berta Swivel plow, in RH-discharge position
40” wide raised beds made in one afternoon
with a Berta Rotary Plow
Rotary plows will work on BCS and Grillo walk-behind tractors that have at least 8.5 hp (gas) or 7 hp (diesel) and 5x10x20” wheels or larger. Distance between wheels needs to be 16” to 18”(measured from the inside of one wheel to the inside of the other), and TYPICALLY, the closer you get to 18”, the better the plow will perform because it takes a bigger “bite” (varies somewhat in different soil types). Axle extensions may be required to achieve optimal working width on wheels.