Published May 13, 2019

Rotary Hoes – Organic Weed Control

By Practical Farmers of Iowa

Rotary hoes are important light tillage tools for early season weed control for organic corn and soybean farmers. In this video, several PFI farmers share their experience with what and when they use rotary hoes for; how often they like to rotary hoe a crop; how they use rotary hoes in corn production differently than for soybean production; how soil and weather conditions affect rotary hoeing; and how to determine condition of used rotary hoes, and more.

Farmers featured in this video say they’re important, because they let you control weeds in the entire field, whereas after the crop gets bigger, in-row weed control becomes much more difficult. They’re often used as a blind cultivation tool – after planting, rotary hoes can stir up the topsoil, killing weeds that are emerging from shallower depths than the crop, giving the crop a head start when it emerges. They’re also used after the crop has emerged, and can continue to scoop tiny weeds out of the soil, even from within the row.