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Planet Jr. rides again


Rolled out the Planet Jr. seeder and got in a first 300′ of peas. Sugar Ann snap peas, that’s edible pod. This is just ahead of three days of colder temperatures, rain, and possibly snow. Since the weather forecast lately more often than not doesn’t even get the rest of the same day nearly right, who knows?! Still feels good to get that in. First direct seeding of the year. Yay. (Oh yeah, the new photo format is from Instagram, an app I’ve been playing with on my phone, kinda like Twitter for pics.  And I started this post from my phone, but  finished writing it on the laptop. Technology: enjoy it while you can! Hahaha. :)



  1. Bravo! We are putting about 150 feet of shelling peas in the ground on probably Thursday. Its such a dance with the weather but gosh its got to be time… do you have o use netting to keep the birds from snatching up the tiny shoots? We have towhees that will pluck the new shoots.

    • Thankfully, I haven’t had that problem. I’m more concerned at the moment with those really big birds called deer, and plan to try deer fence netting. One year a while back, different location, some unidentified bird or birds would nip off the tops of my bean plants, just after they had emerged and the split seeds were tastily perched on top of the little stems. That was terminal and really annoying – solved the problem with surprisingly effective scare balls.

  2. Always miss your posts over the long winters! Let’s see if the weather here in Ontario agrees with those peas; I’m holding off for another week.

    • I’ve heard of people planting peas in snow. :)

  3. Jim

    I recently purchased a planet jr very similar to the one in your pics. Any idea when it may have been made ? Are they rare ? it is missing the back wheel and seed dispencer. I think it is very cool. Any idea of its value ?

    • The one I have must be at least 30 years old. Not sure how far back they go, many decades, I’ve seen photos of a model with a much smaller back wheel. Missing parts they’re probably worth only a few bucks, although I saw a rusty, broken one for $100-200 at a small town farm antique/junk shop, I suppose for hanging up like art. They still make the Planet Jr, tractor and walking, that looks pretty similar to mine, you can click the link and email the company, Cole, for the real dirt!

  4. Dan (tiny market grower)

    I was lucky enough to find a new Cole B73-09B hand seeder a year ago for about 1/3 the cost of retail/shipping. I successfully drilled about a thousand sq feet of buckwheat as cover crop over harvested garlic area in mid-July.

    To get a better count of seed drop rates relating to hole sizes in the seed disks, I used a piece of painter’s tarp about two feet wide by twelve feet long and stapled a 3/4 x 3/4 inch stick to the long edges of the canvas. I can try my actual seed in two or three rows on the tarp to check my drop rates, experiment with the hole size desired, pick up the sticks and use the tarp to funnel the seed back into a container without wasting seed. I’ve seeded peas and spinach and chard this year.

    • Your tarp method sounds cool, effective for picking seed hole sizes. What I settled into is raising the front wheel and rotating it in exact half or full turns, catching the dropped seed, and counting it. I think a half turn is exactly 2′ (I always forget and check again every spring :), with the spokes as markers. To be even more accurate, especially with small seed, I’ve thought of putting in an empty bucket after opening the hopper gate, so the initial drop before turning isn’t counted, but I’ve never bothered to do that. I’ve meant to build a little stand that would raise the Planet Jr. a few inches off the ground. Never got around to it, I’ve gotten used to holding it up and spinning, with a little bucket under the hopper. A convenient stand would make it…science!

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