Best Affordable ATV Food Cutting Execution

This reminds me of Steve Martin’s comedic softness that my siblings and I used to listen to when we were kids. The title of the piece was something like, “How to Make a Million Dollars and Never Pay Taxes,” and it started with: “First, Get a Million Dollars.”

Well, I’m assuming you already have an ATV, so I’m not counting that into the $1,000 mentioned in the title. I’m talking about attachments only. Compared to using hand tools, an ATV makes things infinitely easier and lets you take planning to another level – but only if you have the right tools. And if you’re planning on a relatively small scale, like most fishermen, you really only need a few things. Equally important, they are not expensive. Here’s what I recommend:

1. Filmco ATV or rear towing spray

This 30-gallon pull-back sprayer sells for $409 and works great on flat ground. For uneven terrain, get an ATV-mounted model. Filmco

If your budget is really tight and you’re still young and full of beans, you can get away with just the $75 backpack sprayer. My fishing buddies and I have been doing this for a while, but it takes a lot of time and energy. For about $400, or just under, a 25- or 30-gallon ATV sprayer like the Flimco is totally worth it if you’re going to spray large areas. A farmer friend of mine sprays over 100 acres of cut food each spring with a 25-gallon compound sprayer on his ATV like this a lot. We don’t do nearly that much, but our Filmco 30 gallon capacity has allowed us to double or triple the size and number of plots we can set up and maintain in our limited spare time each year. There are cheaper models out there, and they might work just fine, but we went with Filmco because it’s a trusted brand.

The retractable model is easy to attach and remove, takes no space on your device, and keeps you a little away from chemicals. But – and this is very important – you won’t be happy to quit unless you plan on relatively flat ground. Otherwise, this type of sprinkler will likely tip over frequently. If you have a lot of uneven or sloping ground, use an ATV-mounted sprayer, which also tends to be less expensive.

Groundhog Max Disc Plow
The Max Disc Plow Groundhog retails for just $349.99 or $399.99 with a hitch kit (shown). Bad Dog Accessories

Of course, you don’t need to turn the dirt over to grow bits of food. Brassica and cereal grains are a no-brainer, and you can even make beans and peas with the correct no-till and mulching regime. But I still highly recommend this disc plow.

Now read: How to grow the perfect infinite piece of food

First, it really works. The big complaint about many ATV’s retractable discs is that they don’t weigh enough to really chop the ground. Ground Hog Max uses the weight of your machine to solve this problem. This app’s small size means you can take it anywhere your ATV goes, including hidden little murder plots, yet it can handle a decently sized plot of land as well. We even used her 1/2 acre plot the other day, and she ate it. You have to be patient. You need to make several passes with this disc before you get to the bare soil. But look at it this way: Most people with ATVs enjoy their ride, and that’s all you have to do: ride around a set with a GroundHog Max hook up so you have a good plot.

Groundhog Max Disc Plow
Groundhog Max disc plow uses the weight of the machine to dig deep into dirt. Bad Dog Accessories

But there is a lot you can do with this disc plow. Early in the spring, the farmer we rented from told us he wouldn’t mind if we added some alfalfa to part of an existing hay field. We used GroundHog Max to expose more soil before overseeding, and it worked great. As a result, a corner of the fields that used to be mostly thatch is now mostly alfalfa, and I have no doubt that deer will notice.

We’ll also be putting out a number of brass no-till plots, and some driveways with this disc will definitely increase the exposure of the soil while keeping plenty of mulch to help retain moisture. Also, if you’re going to grow beans by air and don’t have a traction or shredder (see below) you can set this dial a little higher and then even slightly while doing a set of passes; A disc included with your tires will allow you to get the right soil coverage on the seed. Finally, if, like us, you want less spraying and more burning in the future, the GroundHog Max is perfect for creating fire breaks.

Bottom line: You can cash in on this thing for about $350. Just be sure to take a close look at the hitch requirements. If you already have a good, powerful 2-inch dpi receiver, you are good to go. If not, you can buy the model with a built-in hitch kit for just an extra $50, which fits most Hondas and Polaris, as well as a few others. Otherwise, search online for an aftermarket option for your specific device. Another good thing about the GroundHog max is that you can plow fast enough with it that the small, air-cooled CC machines don’t overheat, and that means you don’t need a big, powerful and expensive machine to run this plow.

3. Homemade Harrow Drag

Tuff field tow harrow.
You can purchase this tow harrow from Field Tuff for $235 on Amazon. But making it yourself is very easy and cheap. Amazon

You can buy a basic tow harrow for hundreds of dollars, or you can make one for nothing. Pulling back is great for making smoother seed beds and for ensuring proper soil coverage after broadcasting beer seeds, such as beans and peas, which should be an inch or more deep. To make your own, simply install a few pressure treated 1x4s over some old chain link fencing, then weight it down with wood straps and old ratchets. I like to add long nails to the 1x4s so they go down the bottom a few inches to help loosen the dirt. (You can trim the nails a bit if you’re worried.) Then pull them through the yoke of chain or strong rope. It’s ugly, but it works, and it’s almost free.

This is. Add a good manual seeder or a wheeled drive model for $30 to $50, and you can get a lot done, from cutting simple brassica and cereal grains to beans and peas. So far, the price is around $750, which leaves the remaining money for chemicals, lime, seeds, etc. You might want to add a heavy-duty packing machine down the road, see below, but for now, you have everything you need to take your ATV plotting game to the next level.


Packer Maxx PMX4STND Cultipacker
The Packer Maxx PMX4STND Cultipacker sells for $560. Packer Max

If you have an ATV, you don’t really need a cultivator, as the machine itself works as one. But it’s nice to have the real thing, because it works better and faster. This 4-foot ATV/UTV rear towing model from Packer Maxx is durable, affordable, and lightweight for transportation. (You fill it with water on site when you are ready to use it.) It is ideal for finishing seeded plowed plots and for disposing of cover crops, such as buckwheat, when used as mulch on no-till plots.

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