Compact tractor tricks

Clearing peppers with the compact tractor

For some reason, I always feel a little guilty when I use the Kubota compact tractor in ways that make things way too easy. For instance… Probably the worst is the clearing technique I came up with a couple of years ago when it was cold and hand work was going slow. If you set the bucket of the front end loader pointing nearly down, and drag backwards, you can completely clear old plants in NO TIME AT ALL. Here, I’m removing a 50′ bed of hot peppers in one pass (the sweet peppers, in another section of the field, were lower growing and got tilled under a couple of days ago…). Is this gratuitous soil compaction, driving the machine over the beds unnecessarily? Well, maybe. But it’s so QUICK, and not an all-the-time thing. Does it drag off valuable topsoil? Not if you start feathering as you go, lifting and lowering the bucket a few inches lets the tangled mass of plants roll, freeing the soil. I try to do most clearing by hand, but sometimes, well, you take the shortcut…!

2 thoughts on “Compact tractor tricks”

  1. Dragging backwards with the bucket tilted all the way down can end up bending the bucket cylinders.  Drag back carefully.  A toothbar will help scoot plants without grabbing dirt.


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