Can You Identify All of This Equipment a Farmer Would Use?
By: Lauren Lubas
Image: Nick Brundle Photography / Moment / Getty Images
About This Quiz
America's farmers produce food that is exported all over the country as well as the food that we eat every day. The farming and agriculture industry takes up nearly 1 billion (with a B) acres of U.S. land. With over 2.2 million farms (as of 2007) giving us everything from chickens to avocados to grapes and all the way down to onions, the farming industry produces tons of crops and livestock that provide us with clothing, fuel and even plastic substitutes.
For anyone who has never been on a farm or done any farm work, it can be hard to imagine everything a farmer goes through to ensure healthy crops and high yields, and all of that hard work requires tool and equipment. Some of these tools are your standard hammers, nails and pitchforks, but others are made specifically for farming (and some of them for specific types of farming). If you are ready to dive into the world of farming, check this quiz. We found 40 tools and pieces of equipment that farmers use. Now, we want to see if you can identify each piece. We'll be impressed if you can name more than 30!
Manure spreaders do just what it sounds like they do. They evenly spread manure and across fields. They can be purchased in various sizes, and depending on the size of your farm, you can get one that holds 8 cubic feet or one that holds 810 cubic feet.
Combines are used for harvesting large amounts of grain in a single swipe. They are also known as harvesters. Even small farms find that renting or hiring combine technicians is the most effective and efficient way to harvest.
Farm equipment companies don't play around with names. Balers create bales of hay. Though there are different types of balers (square and round), they are quite expensive, so it's essential to understand the baling process before making the investment.
Broadcast seeders are available in various sizes and can be used on large or small farms. They are adjustable and can spread seeds in various-sized areas. You can get them to attach to a tractor or an ATV, or you can buy stand-alone ones as well.
This tool is necessary for shaping the soil. What is it?
A hoe can shape the soil and prepare long rows for planting. It is also used to keep weeds under control because it can chop the root structures of the weeds with ease. Most small farms have at least one of these.
You may know this as a pitchfork, but do you know what its real name is?
Spading forks (or pitchforks) are used to get the roots of weeds out of the soil. They can also be used for composting, as they are great tools to turn and mix the materials (so you don't have to get your hands dirty).
A cultivator helps farmers till the soil. It can break up large chunks of soil and remove weeds from the land. It also helps stir the soil and loosen it for planting. These generally attach to tractors.
This machine is often used in areas with droughts. What is it?
Irrigation sprinklers come in many shapes and sizes. However, if you're ever in an airplane and see circular farmland, you know that they are using an irrigation sprinkler, as they are generally put in the center of the field and they spin around it.
Bow rakes are metal rakes with long, thin ends. They are tougher than the rakes we use to clean up leaves in the fall, and they have a lot of different purposes. However, they are mostly used for clearing garbage and gathering items for compost.
Spring balances are scales that help farmers weigh produce. In general, if a farmer is working at a market or brings goods to a retailer in smaller quantities, they will have at least one of these on hand.
It might look intimidating, but it is very helpful. What is it?
Augers can be seen in many pieces of machinery, but farmers use soil augers to dig holes in the fields. For the most part, they are used for soil sampling and testing, so farmers know if they need to add anything.
While this tool looks interesting, it has a very important job. Do you know its name?
They aren't used all too often on farms, but they are great for one specific job: removing T-posts from the ground. T-posts are parts of fences that anchor them to the ground. They are buried deep to give the fence stability, making them difficult to remove ... without a farm jack, that is.
The majority of farms need some kind of pesticide or herbicide to protect the crops from invasive weeds and insects. While organic foods are becoming more popular, some natural pesticides and herbicides don't contain chemicals that help organic farmers keep their crops safe.
Can you name this piece of equipment that is necessary for dry days?
Drip irrigation system
Drip irrigation systems are a different kind of irrigation system. They slowly drip water onto plants and can be installed above the soil or underneath. They were created to save on water usage, as they use a fraction of the water that most other irrigation systems use.
This extra-large piece of equipment is essential during harvest season. What is it?
Grain carts are also called chaser bins. They are connected to tractors, and they follow harvesting equipment to ensure fast harvesting. This helps farmers get the work of dozens of men done in a fraction of the time.
Disc grinders have become one of the most used tools on modern farms. They have several discs that can be interchanged based on the job the farmer is doing. These tasks include cutting, sanding and polishing.
Cotton pickers are specific tools used on cotton farms. This large piece of machinery reduces the time it takes to harvest cotton while maximizing the efficiency of the cotton harvest. It is necessary for all cotton farms.
Rice hullers work very much like cotton gins. They were created to help farmers husk the rice. The husk of rice is also known as the chaff. Farmers send the rice through this machine, and it drastically cuts husking time.
This plough does a specific job. What kind of plough is it?
There are many different kinds of ploughs, but the chisel plough has a specific job. It cuts long rows deep into the soil without disrupting much of the soil that is next to it. This helps farmers make even rows for the harvest.
Destoners are generally used on farms that have rocky soil. They help farmers remove stones and large rocks from the planting areas and transplant them to furrows to help tractors get more traction on wet days.
Yes, farmers use regular old water sprinklers on their farms. While larger farms have complex and intricate irrigation systems, smaller farms find that a simple impact sprinkler does the job well enough.
While some might want to use this on the beach, farmers use it every spring before they plant. What is it?
Stone pickers are interesting tools that sift through the top soil and collect any rocks or pebbles that can interfere with the planting or growing processes. These awesome machines are incredibly helpful on farms.
Much like steam rollers help flatten asphalt during road construction, agricultural rollers flatten the fields and destroy large accumulations of soil. This helps the farmers work with equipment later.
Do you recognize this machine that you'd find on a potato farm?
Potato harvesters do exactly what their name suggests. They harvest potatoes. Remember that potatoes grow in the ground, making it impossible to use grain machinery to harvest them. Luckily for potato farmers, this bad boy was created.
Can you name this machine that is generally found in the United States and Canada?
Swathers are also known as windrowers. A windrow is a long line of grain or hay that is set out to dry in the wind. Swathers cut the hay or grain and pile them into a windrow. They're an essential time-saving tool for grain farmers.
Milking cows is not an easy business, but these little machines help retrieve milk from udders. While they still need to be attached by farmers, the act of tugging and pulling and milking is all done mechanically.
These massive machines clear vegetation. What are they?
Mulching machines clear large portions of vegetation and forestry and (as you may have guessed) create mulch that can be used in home gardens or farms. These machines are huge and are usually rented through large equipment companies.