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» Economics » Technology in the horticulture » Topics begins with P » Plow

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A plow is agricultural equipment, which is used for making up the field (plows).

History of the plow

Already the plow replaced heel, spade and grave stick.

The earliest method to up-loosen the soil was probably this very day in parts of the third world used grave stick. Loosen the soil with heel and spade took place only on small surfaces. Already before 5.500 v. Chr. existed in Europe simple, first hook plows made of wood, pulled by humans. With LINE volume ceramic(s) came around 5.500 v. Chr. the plow pulled from oxen by means of yoke and table-ware up. The consisted of a course-sharpened wood, that the soil broke and had neither plowshare, Sech, turning board or wheels. Such plows held themselves in Central Europe in the late Middle Ages. First pulled only cattle, thus cows or oxen the plow. Later were added donkeys, camel or Maultiere, in the long run took over this the more efficient horses.

In 4. Century arose the wheel plow, these concentrates the tractive power of the animal more on breaking the soil open instead of on pulling the heavy equipment. The use from horses to plowing became really effective with the invention of the Kummets, because still up to 8. Jh. used neck and body belt did not impair the respiration of the course animal and the strand table-ware common thereafter was also many more effective.

A substantial improvement was the iron plowshare. The impact of the plow improved by the mounting of a Streichbrettes (since plows from steel are manufactured, moldboard mentioned), and the colter knife enormously: By the cutting tools crowd and Sech the earth strip is cut out and turned by the moldboard. The vegetation, also inadvertent Beikraut (so-called weeds), is buried thereby and it is only clean earth on the surface.

Cast-iron (however forgeable, not inflexibly) plowshares (chin.: guan) with sharp point, following centre web and for friction reduction easily upward bent for scraping the earth off there were 3 in China already since that. Century v. Chr. Already at this time before the turn of an era - four kinds of Streichbrettern in China, which changed properly matching (i.e. without friction, existed) into the plowshare and which differently turned and raised soil. Further one could stop the depth, in which one wanted to plow the earth on the construction. The knowledge around the building method was spread in old China by official side.

To Europe Streichbretter were only introduced in the late Middle Ages (first from wood) and afterwards to in 18. Jh. still very primitively built, so that one had large friction losses and more course animals for the same work needed (6-8 opposite 1-2 oxen in China). Only in 18. Jh. began a serious reorientation with the Rotherham Plough, probably inspired by the plows bring along by the Dutchmen from China. A pioneer in the area was James Small (around 1730-1793), whose plows interspersed themselves in England and Scotland (however not yet in Germany) for 150 years.

The American forge John Deere 1837 invented the first self-cleaning steel plow (steel is harder as cast iron) and puts thereby the foundation for his enterprise DEERE & Company, which is today the largest agricultural machinery manufacturer of the world.

The plows pulled by horses distinctive in:

  • Stelzpflug (only one wheel or a skid plate before that crowd)
  • Swinging plow (no wheel for guidance; the plow is led only by the kind of the connection in the depth)
  • Karrenpflug (two-wheel truck as guiing device before the plow)

The plows had two grasps (Sterzen) starting from the Middle Ages in the back, at which the lead the plow and conditionally also could steer. Normally one had to lift the plow at the end of a furrow toilsomely around. For and the in a direction one needs a turning plow.

The Wanzleber plow made that for low plows possible in the cultivation of sugar beet. The substantial innovation was to the wooden standards (a rack) fastened iron moldboard. Now a furrow was reached of 12 " (approx. 30.5 cm) depth.

Plows for animal course are manufactured until today still in large number of items e.g. in India.

Plows without course animals: Fully-automated system of plowing

The age of full-mechanized plowing began in Europe at approximately 1850 with the steam plow, that was Lokomobilen, which were set up at the end of the field, in order at rope hoists the plow on the field and be tightened. Since these Lokomobilen were too heavy for direct pulling of the plow on the deep culture soils in Europe, tractors arose, like we them today know only with invention of the lighter combustion engine.

1858 lent the British Royal Agricultural Society (royal agricultural society) to English engineer John Fowler a prize money of 500 Pound for a steam plow, which had expenditure-praised her for an economic replacement of plow or spade.

Modern plows are pulled by tractors. The first plows had originally only one plow bottom, while the modern plows are usually mehrfurchig.

Today's remarks of plows

Kind of connection:

  • Cultivation plow = plow, which is cultivated firmly at the tractor and by this is dug. (Today mostly to 5-scharig, rarely 6-scharig)
  • Aufsattelpflug = plow with own chassis (1 or 2 wheels), which a part plow yielding width unit carries. (Today usually starting from 5 crowds and usually in Europe upto max. 12 crowds)

Plow design

  • General-purpose plow = plow with a row crowds (turns only in 1 direction, usually to the right). Larger fields must be divided therefore into smaller "patches", therefore the name general-purpose plow.
  • Volldrehpflug = plow with 2 rows crowds, 1 x left 1 x right-cutting.

The are turned with hydraulics (oil pressure).

Miscellaneous items

In household of German citizens around 1900 that belonged to volume behind plow and vice of the writer and engineer max of Eyth to the iron existence.

In the transferred sense the term is used with a snow plough or when ski driving for the plow elbow used in former times (see momentum (ski))"….

see also: Tilting plow


Manufacturer of horse-pulled plows:

Light TIG, Eberhardt, Landsberg, Rud. Bag, Ventzki,

Today's manufacturers:

Eberhardt, Kuhn, Landsberg, Niemeyer, Rabe, Lemken GmbH, bird & Noot, Kverneland, frost,


  • Ulrich Bentzien: Hook and plow. Berlin 1969.
  • Refuge W. From the history of the plow. Agriculture museum heath Nr.5, 1993.

Related links

Plow museum Guntmadingen

Articles in category "Plow"

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