The Cross Slot Drill 

Farming has become increasingly challenging, with soil degradation and blackgrass in particular being significant issues. A few years ago we became aware that the quality of our most important asset, namely our soil, was deteriorating and that is was most likely the result of historic cultivation methods. In light of this, as a family we began heavily researching direct drilling and discovered the Cross Slot drill, manufactured in New Zealand, which enables the seed to be planted into bare stubbles without ploughing or cultivating the soil.


Following our research we identified a local contractor who supplied us with a four-metre Cross Slot drill and we began experimenting with the drill at Whitehouse Farm. After a pleasing five-year trial period we had seen some very encouraging results, including significant increases in worm activity coupled with increased organic matter and soil health. A collective decision was then taken to purchase and import a six-metre Cross Slot Drill.


Using a combination of direct drilling, companion crops and cover crops not only do we strive to increase soil health and biology, but also it is our aim to be more environmentally aware, reduce soil compaction and combat the yield plateau. In addition to the agronomic benefits, there is also a financial incentive; this system significantly reduces establishment costs due to the reduction in time, fuel, labour, machinery and wearing parts.


It is a priority for James Mahon & Sons Ltd to provide our clients with competitive contractors charges. As well as offering a range of conventional cultivation and establishment techniques, we can provide a chance for UK farmers to see the impressive results that can be achieved on varied soil types by our Cross Slot drill. For more information or quotes please contact Leo to discuss your requirements.