Simba Flatliner subsoiler - IMG 4526

A large Simba subsoiler

A subsoiler or mole plow is a tractor mounted implement used to loosen and break up soil at depths below the level of a traditional disk harrow or rototiller. Most tractor mounted cultivation tools will break up and turn over surface soil to a depth of 6" to 8" while a subsoiler will break up and loosen soil to twice those depths. Typically subsoiler mounted to a Compact Utility Tractor will reach depths of about 12" and typically have only one thin blade with a sharpened tip.

The subsoiler is a tillage tool which will improve growth in all crops where soil compaction is a problem. The design provides deep tillage, loosening soil deeper than a tiller or plow is capable of reaching. Agricultural subsoilers, according to the Unverferth Company, can disrupt hardpan ground down to 24" depths.[1]

Ford FW 30 pulling Subsoiler at Saunders WD 08 - IMG 4098

A Ford FW30 pulling a subsoiler at the Bernard Saunders Working Day in 2008

Agricultural tractors will have multiple deeper reaching blades; each blade is called scarifiers or shanks. Purdue University's Dept. Of Agriculture indicates that common subsoilers for agricultural use are available with 3, 5 or 7 shanks. These units can be up to 15' wide, some models are towed behind tractors, others are tractor mounted to the Three-point Linkage. [2]

A form of this implement called a Mole Plough which is fitted (with a single blade) is used to lay buried pipes either for drainage or to provide a water supply. A flexible plastic pipe is led down a guide behind the blade, and is left buried behind the plough, without the need to dig a deep trench and re-fill it.

Main article: mole plough


See alsoEdit

References / SourcesEdit

  • Wikipedia for base article to define the term in other articles
  1. Brent Tremor Agricultural Subsoilers
  2. Purdue Ag Equipment Sizes & Storage

External linksEdit

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