Husqvarna T200 compact

Its working width is fractionally larger than the Mantis, but the Husqvarna T200 compact has the appearance of a more "regular" tiller. It has the two-handled styling we expect of a typical "kitchen-garden tiller".

The T200 is lightweight - just 12kg - and the handles fold, so it's easy to lift the machine in and out of a van. Carrying the unit is made even easier by an appropriately positioned grip handle.

We put the T200 to work in the wet, sticky soil and waited for the tines to clog. We don't expect it to take long. And sure enough, the awful conditions on the day of the test prove too much. However, before the tiller picks up more soil than the unit itself weighs, we're able to see the potential to do a good job. Certainly vibration levels are low on this machine.

Before the work was abandoned we noted that, for the small size of tiller, this one has plenty of power. It is equipped with an easy-starting 1.5hp Honda GX31 OHV engine and has a heavy-duty worm gear transmission with triple bearings, giving one forward speed. There is no reverse. The tines rotate at 190rpm and easily dig to a depth of 15cm.

We reckon the price of £320 ex VAT represents good value for money. It is also worth noting that there are various attachments - moss rake, ridger, edger, scarifer - to increase the versatility of the T200.

We would like to work with this tiller again - but in more suitable conditions - and perhaps get a chance to try some of the accessories.

The review panel

Rob Pinion,
grounds person, College of West Anglia, Wisbech

Barbara Welbourn
, assistant grounds person, College of West Anglia, Wisbech.

Carrying out a test of cultivation equipment in December was always likely to be plagued by the vagaries of the British weather. That is why we chose to test the equipment in the eastern part of the country. But even at Wisbech the rain can be torrential - so much so that the normally free-draining soil became saturated.

Although the conditions for testing could hardly be further from ideal, we were able to look at six items of cultivation equipment. In the pedestrian section we chose the Husqvarna CRT51 as an example of a wheeled rotary cultivator. It turned out to be a surprise when it came to coping with sticky, waterlogged soil.

The Husqvarna T200 compact and Mantis tiller were selected as examples of small, narrow-width rotary tillers, while the Efco MZ2090R is a full-width tiller. Finally, we looked at two machines from BLEC. The BLEC/Harley power box rake is a tractor-mounted, PTO-driven unit for preparing seedbeds and the BLEC SR3H pedestrian rotor rake is a walk-behind unit for use with Honda power tillers.

The rains eased for the duration of the tests but the soil remained saturated throughout this time. The wind was a cold easterly.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Is a post-Brexit seasonal worker scheme now impossible?

Is a post-Brexit seasonal worker scheme now impossible?

The UK fresh-produce sector has reacted with dismay at the latest developments in the ongoing debate, largely conducted out of public view, on whether UK horticulture will still have access to seasonal migrant workers when the UK leaves the EU in 18 months' time.

Can UK fresh produce come out of Brexit ahead?

Can UK fresh produce come out of Brexit ahead?

UK production horticulture can become more profitable under one possible Brexit scenario, while other more drastic scenarios will lead to only minor losses in profitability, a new report argues.

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

An effective strategy to retain staff is the best way for any business to avoid a potential recruitment crisis, Neville Stein advises.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Professor Geoffrey Dixon

GreenGene International chair Geoff Dixon on the business of fresh produce production
 

Read Professor Geoffrey Dixon