4 Nursery Machines built specially for nursery container growers

Here are 4 examples and some info to learn a little bit about the different nursery machines that are built specifically for nursery growers:

Potting Machines

Potting machines have been for a very long time and have provided numerous growers with efficiency improvements.  They come in many sizes to fit the needs of any size grower.  The primary purpose of this nursery machine is to fill containers with soil for growing plants.  They typically have a hopper to hold material and a means to dispense the material over the top of a container, tray or flat.

Potting Machine

Soil Mixers

Soil Mixers are a popular nursery machine that is used to uniformly blend multiple growing media ingredients to create a consistent mixture that provides beneficial growing characteristics.  Often, a grower has specific needs and desires for their growing media or soil and a specialized mixture may not be available locally.  They may have some local suppliers that can provide some of the ingredients but not all.  If a grower is looking for a special blend, they will either need to purchase this blend from a distributor that can blend material and deliver, or they will have to buy the ingredients individually and mix the soil onsite.  This is where a soil mixer is used.  These machines have hoppers that are sized to mix the quantities that the grower is looking for.  You can put in the required materials and then mix a batch of a custom blended media.  A soil mixer can either be designed to mix batches of material or as a continuous mixing system.

Soil Mixer Machine
Soil Mixer

Container Forks

Container forks are used to eliminate the repetition of moving a single container from a wagon to the ground or vice versa.  A fork system combined with a forklift allow for a grower to move many plants at the same time, increasing speed and efficiency as well as placing the plants on the ground uniformly.

Tracking Wagons

Tracking wagons are an integral part of a plant nursery.  They provide the ability for a person to build a train of wagons that can navigate an often-narrow nursery driving lane.  You can hook multiple tracking wagons together and they will all follow the same tire path as the tractor or side by side drives through the nursery.

Nursery Potting Machine

What does a potting machine do?

Potting machines are used in both greenhouses and nurseries, and they mechanize the filling of containers for potting plants.  There are many different types ranging from filling up buildings to sitting in the corner of a greenhouse.  Some machines are built to be portable and are towed around with a tractor.  Others are integrated into a building and use conveyors to feed material in.  In addition to filling, a machine can also drill a hole for planting or add fertilizer automatically.  Some potting machines can recycle material back into the hopper for reuse while others may only dump material.  A potting machine is one of the critical pieces of equipment used in the growing of plants.

What does a soil dispenser do?

A soil dispenser is like a potting machine but can also be used to fill bags of material.  These machines are more versatile but often don’t include the soil return mechanisms seen in potting machines.  They also may not have a specially designed area for pots to be placed on.

What is a nursery pot filler?

A nursery pot filler is used in both greenhouses and nurseries, and they mechanize the filling of containers for potting plants.  There are many different types ranging from filling up buildings to sitting in the corner of a greenhouse.  Some machines are built to be portable and are towed around with a tractor.  Others are integrated into a building and use conveyors to feed material in.  In addition to filling, a machine can also drill a hole for planting or add fertilizer automatically.  Some potting machines can recycle material back into the hopper for reuse while others may only dump material.  A potting machine is one of the critical pieces of equipment used in the growing of plants.

What to look for in a Greenhouse Flat Filler for sale?

A greenhouse flat filler is a special adaptation of a traditional potting machine.  A flat filler will use a potting machine that lifts growing media up and drops it into a container and it then incorporates additional special steps utilizing components like conveyors, scraping bars, brushes, and rollers to level the material and ultimately create a uniformly filled rectangular tray.  Uniform tray filling is key to a quality flat filler.  Here’s a link to some more info on selecting a tray filler:  https://www.greenhousemag.com/article/tech-solutions-selecting-a-tray-filler/

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What does the warranty look like?

3 Year, Unlimited Hours Warranty – INCLUDED

What does it include?

Includes: Problem identification, remote trouble shooting of issue, support and instruction for proper repair, and providing replacement of failed parts.

What is excluded?

Excludes – Misuse of equipment (including using non horticultural potting mixes with high sand and field soil content) or improper care, such as leaving fertilizer in machine for an extended period of time.  Wear parts (chain, slats, wear plates or surfaces).  External physical damage inflicted on the machine.  Labor repair costs.

We will walk you through the repair process and make sure you're happy.

What about Service Parts?

Yes, we keep inventory of most all parts. Most all of the components are either US Sourced or a common off the shelf component. We are having some supply chain issues on components, but we are working through the best way to manage that.

What about Repair?

All of our machines are designed right here in the US.  We design these machines to be easily repairable by an inexperienced worker.  Should a problem arise, you won’t need to weld or fabricate a new part.  The entire machine is bolted together and you can simply bolt in a replacement part.

The hopper capacity seems low

We have heard that concern, I get it, you won’t be able to load a machine up and let a person pot plants for a day.

Some perspective – The rear load machine holds about 3/4 – 1 cubic yard which is up to about 200 gallons of material. That gives you about 15 minutes of runtime without stopping.

The reason for the smaller equipment size is to primarily keep the price and complexity down.

Increasing the machine size has a few unwelcome side effects:

-Increase horsepower requirements which means increased power – now you have to have dedicated power for the machine.

-Increasing the hopper size also increases the physical size of the machine which increases the overall cost and reduces portability

You may have not made a purchase on a potting machine in the past because of the overall cost.

We're being cautious around those concerns and trying to work within your business goals.

Is this production rate slow?

From time to time, we hear that our production rates appear slow. Look at it this way though. You have 5 or 10 workers running a high-speed line. SOMETHING GOES WRONG, you now have all these people standing around and/or you need to find a different job for them.

What's your real per man hour potting rate?

If you have a machine problem with a high-speed line you’re completely shut down.  With a cell-based design, you have a small part of the potting operation down.  Your efficiency is similar whether you have 1 or 4 people operating STILT.PRO machines.

Your business is complex, don't make it worse.

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