Earth Tools/Hoss Multi-row Vegetable Seeders
This system is based on the American-made Hoss “deluxe” seeders, which feature a large steel drive wheel and “disc”-style openers – great for not plugging up when there is some fibrous organic matter (cover crop, vegetable residue) in the soil. While not quite as precise as the Korean Jang seeders, these are MUCH more adaptable to a full range of seed sizes, and MUCH more affordable.
We have designed this system to be fully “modular”: you buy the frame, and you buy the seeders separately, as many as you want (up to 5 will fit on the frame). Minimum row spacing is 7”…if working on 30” beds, you can just barely squeeze 5 rows on a 30” wide bed. (Yes, 7 x 5 is 35…but you have a row at “0”, so it’s actually a total spread of 28”) The actual frame is 40” wide, which allows you to get the outside rows up to 34” apart if desired.
The seed-singulation mechanism is a rotating “plate” or “disk” that is positively driven by a roller chain attached to the rear wheel. Typical accuracy rate is around 70%, but varies depending on seed… this type of seeder will have a higher accuracy rate for large seeds (80 - 90%) vs. small seeds (50 - 60%). The seeder units can slide around easily in the frame to change row spacing. Seeder units can also be removed quickly if a less dense planting is desired. The frame is fully adjustable up & down to match the tire size of the tractor, and for proper seed depth. There are also individual depth adjustments on each seeder unit. FOR BEST RESULTS, MUST NOT EXCEED 1.5 MPH! (This means 1st or 2nd gear in these walk-behind tractors, and only partial engine throttle speed if working in 2nd gear!) MOVING TOO FAST WITH THIS SEEDER WILL RESULT IN JAMMING / BREAKING OF SEED.
These seeders each come with 6 “standard” seed plates, and Hoss offers 4 other “standard” plates at just $6 each (we stock all sizes, see below). Best of all, they offer “Blank” plates for $6 each, and a $14 “template” you can use with a drill to create a plethora of plates for any seed spacing or size. (Sorry, in our video, we mention the prices as $5 and $12 for the plates and template…Hoss had a price increase!)
Each seeder unit comes with the following “standard” seed plates (any of which can be ordered individually if you need replacements eventually):
The seeder works with bare or “pelleted” seed, but for SMALLER seeds, it definitely works MORE ACCURATELY when seeds are pelleted. Seed plates can be changed in seconds by removing a single wing-nut…once this nut is removed, the seed “hoppers” lift right off, so unused seeds can be poured out. NOTE: Hoss does actually recommend using these seeders with the rubber hopper-covers REMOVED, so you can see if there are any issues with seed flow.
In late 2018, BCS America began offering a version of this Hoss seeder, but as you can see on the BCS America website, their version costs almost twice as much per row-unit!! A large reason for this is that they have gone to the trouble & expense of adding a SECOND wheel the the front of the seeder..They claim that this “press wheel” is needed to “make way for the coulter disc”. Simply put, we did not find this to be the case; one of the advantages of rolling disk-coulters is that they are less picky about what the soil looks like in front of them. What we DO know is that adding a “3rd set of wheels” (1: Tractor wheels, 2: “press” wheels, and 3: rear seeder-drive-wheels) makes it WAY more complicated to adjust the seeder so that BOTH sets of seeder wheels have the correct ground pressure…which is one of the reasons our seeder design does NOT use the extra wheel. (Curiously, BCS America also implies that their Draw Bar/frame design results in the seeders being “closer to the tractor wheels”…not sure what they’re comparing to, but their design is certainly NOT “shorter” than ours.) PLUS, our exclusive frame design allows mirco-adjustment of the height the ENTIRE frame at once (see photo above), so on the Earth Tools version, you don’t have to adjust each individual seeder to get the ground-contact angle set “right”, like you would on the BCS version.
For best results with this seeder (or any other multi-row seeder), the bed should be prepared with either a power harrow (which comes with a press-roller in the rear already) OR a tiller equipped with a roller to press the bed out firm and flat. Trying to use multi-row seeders on beds that are not level or too “fluffy” can be frustrating, because the individual seeders will “skip” if a rear seeder-drive-wheel comes off the ground because it hit a “low” spot compared to the seeders next to it. HOWEVER, WE DO OFFER SOMETHING TO HELP WITH THIS: We have introduced “treads” that can be clamped on to the seeder drive wheels to give them better traction in soft / less level soils. (See below for pricing info)