At PHS we have the ability to provide a variety of equipment services with a focus on agriculture and forestry/environmental applications. We can assist with basic site-work projects as well. There is no job too big or too small.
Equipment services provide efficient ways to handle land management operations. It’s surprising how quickly wide open spaces can become overgrown with stubborn weeds, volunteer saplings, and brush. Clearing land to use for farming, hunting, and wildlife habitats requires skill, knowledge, and accessibility to the proper equipment. Landowners can protect their interests by using a qualified land management company like Promise Habitat Services.
LIGHT AND HEAVY BRUSH MOWING
Light and heavy brush mowing is a preferred way of handling the clearing of large, overgrown areas. Operating a self-propelled brush mower involves walking behind the equipment and guiding it along narrow walkable areas. Bush hogs are tow-behind mowers and deal with overgrown meadows, fields, and other large areas. This piece of equipment takes care of grasses and weeds without jamming. It’s powerful enough to cut through saplings up to 3 inches thick.
HEAVY BRUSH MULCHING
Heavy brush mulching and under-brushing are done with a low ground pressure attachment connected to equipment such as a Bobcat skid steer, agricultural tractor, or rubber-tired hydraulic tractor. The unit mulches mid-story and understory plants with a diameter less than six inches. Mulching reduces fuel loads, creates firelines in high vegetation areas, and reduces invasive plants in environmentally sensitive areas.
ROLLER DRUM CHOPPING
Roller drum chopping is a mechanical way of removing undesirable species of most trees and can be used to control brush, possibly eliminating the need to use herbicides. Clearing allows sunlight to reach the forest floor and encourages the growth of desirable native herbaceous plants.
The roller drum chopper knocks down and chops up brush, chews up trees with diameters of three inches or less, and severs some shallow roots.
This heavy unit is usually pulled with a prime mover, such as a skidder. Grader blades are mounted on the drum, which is usually about six feet in diameter and eight feet wide. Landowners should know that it should not be used on wet areas because it will compact and scar the earth.
Field disking/plowing usually involves use of a moldboard plow and tilling to a depth between 8 – 12 inches. The land is disked two or more times before planting. Disking is also used to: create/rehabilitate firelines, prepare food plots, and enhance/create habitats during reforestation projects.
FOOD PLOT ESTABLISHMENT AND MANAGEMENT
Landowners may want to establish a supplemental food source for wildlife on their land. Food plot establishment and management address that desire. The native vegetation must be managed at the same time since it provides essential nutrients and quality foods. The plot should be accessible to the wildlife for which it is intended, especially during winter and other stressful periods.
A soils analysis test is important because it tells the landowner if the desired vegetation will grow in that particular spot. The plot and surrounding area must be properly managed to avoid unwanted vegetation from taking over and destroying all the hard work.
Locations include forest edges and open fields.
Equipment includes tractors, cultivators, rototillers, sprayers, and spreaders.
LOADER AND DOZER SERVICES
There are many sizes and features for construction equipment. Loader and dozer services are evaluated to be sure the equipment needed for the job is available.
A compact tracked loader is simply a skid steer with tracks. Its increased traction and higher flotation add stability on loose soil. Clearing right-of-ways for site preparation may require a skidder with a dozer blade. A firefighting dozer is frequently needed. It’s essential to match the right equipment for the job.
LICENSED HERBICIDE APPLICATION
Herbicides reduce soil compaction and erosion caused by using heavy equipment services. Licensed herbicide application has proven effective with vegetation control and is an effective part of land management. Many types of vegetation can be targeted with a single application.
Helicopter spray booms deliver a wide application, as do the ground sprayers for ATVs and skidders. Handheld sprayers allow additional control over which plants are treated. Risks include the likelihood of the herbicide drifting onto trees and other plants.
FARM AND FORESTRY ROAD BUILDING
Equipment used for farm and forestry road building depends on road construction guidelines. Bulldozers can be used to move trees. Dead-end roads should be cleared and leveled at the end for an easy turn-around. Mulchers help clear the land for roads and right of ways.
EXOTIC PLANT SPECIES
TREATMENT AND MANAGEMENT
Even with advances in what equipment can do, the most expensive option of exotic plant species treatment/management is still mechanical site preparation. Clearing an area requires fewer times for passing over a site. Combination plows are attached to tractors with a small blade to remove debris. In just one pass they rip subsoil, shear and clear debris, and create planting beds.
Planned burns, though inexpensive and effective, must be carefully planned to maximize effectiveness and reduce the hazards of fire. Chemical applications are site-specific. They enhance land by reducing competing vegetation and invasive exotic species.
Aquatic management is tailored to eliminate problems in waterways from weed control to planting native plants and stocking fish. PHS applicators are knowledgeable about aquatic plant species and certified and licensed by the State of Florida.
We evaluate customer waterways to determine which methods to use. Exotic aquatic plant species thrive in Florida. The result is an overgrowth that interferes with the integrity of bodies of water and outdoor sports like boating and fishing.
Overgrowth can be quickly removed by mechanical, herbicide (algaecides and herbicides), and manual methods. Dredging and deepening a pond helps control the amount of rooted aquatic plants. Draglines are used for underwater dredging in small ponds, while excavation machinery like bulldozers are useful for drained areas.