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Expanding Equipment and Capacity on the Borderlands Restoration Farm and Native Plant Program

We are excited to announce that in April, we finalized an equipment purchase with Jim Koweek of Arizona Revegetation LLC, acquiring a tractor, hydroseeder, truck, trailer, land imprinter, and a seed slinger. Jim approached us in the summer of 2023 with an equipment sale offer that came at the perfect time to expand capacity for the newly acquired farm, as well as hydroseeding restoration work. We have always admired Jim's business and skills in the revegetation world and have been privileged to have the opportunity to work with him as he trains us in equipment maintenance and hydroseeding.


Native Plant Program staff with Jim Koweek.
Native Plant Program staff with Jim Koweek.

The newly acquired 440 Mahindra tractor is a huge step up from the tiny ancient Ford tractor we had been using to mow weeds and fill the soil bins. Both Travis Gerckens, Farm Manager, and Casey Jacobs, Maintenance/Horticulture Lead, appreciate its smooth turning radius and power steering. It also has a significant amount more horsepower, allowing us to utilize farm equipment to harvest seed and grade roads.


Travis Gerckens, our Farm Manager, using the newly acquired tractor.
Travis Gerckens, our Farm Manager, using the newly acquired tractor.

The hydroseeder is an exciting piece of equipment that allows us to expand into a foray of restoration work we haven't worked on before. Hydroseeding is the process of combining seed, tackifier (a Plantago-based binding agent), mulch, and water to apply large amounts of seed in a short period of time so it sticks to the ground and waits for rain. Thanks to Jim, we've lined up a series of jobs to learn the ropes of hydroseeding, and Travis and Casey have been instrumental in adding these skills to their repertoire and getting these jobs done at the onset of these summer rains.


Jim Koweek with the land imprinter and pup.
Jim Koweek with the land imprinter and pup.

We look forward to using the hydroseeder in cases where we need to apply seed to an easily accessible area like a residence or sites in need of reseeding that are close to a road. To hydroseed, the ground needs to be prepped and scarified to allow the seed a ready bed to germinate, and we need to have access to water. We will continue to use seed pellets (a dried pelletized mixture of clay, seed, and compost we make in a cement mixer) to put out in our harder-to-reach restoration sites that don't have access to water and will have to wait for the rain.


We are starting to advertise and take new contracts for hydroseeding as we spend this year learning the ropes, but if you have a project in mind or any questions, you can email us at horticulture@borderlandsrestoration.org. You can also still work with Jim by purchasing seed mixes from him, hiring him for revegetation and plant ID consulting, or buying his incredible plant ID books, available at many retail locations in Tucson and southeastern Arizona, at borderlandsplants.org or azreveg.com.

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