Avant compact loader chosen for transporting and planting instant hedging
Practicality Brown of Iver in Buckinghamshire, one of the UK’s largest suppliers of semi-mature trees, has been using Avant compact wheeled loaders since 2006 and recently swapped its 630 model for a more powerful 635 in order to cope with an increasing workload in connection with the planting of the company’s unique Elveden Instant Hedge™product.
According to managing director Alastair Beddall, “When we had the original demonstration of an Avant machine the staff wouldn’t allow me to return it as they were so impressed with its abilities!” In fact, this original 528 model is still in use, mainly for handling trees in the main nursery.
Mr. Beddall continued, “I have to say I was somewhat sceptical at first because the Avant was so much smaller than anything we had previously used, but now we wouldn’t be without one.”
“We grow about 15 different species of hedge”, said Graeme Jenkins who heads up the tree and hedge department at Practicality Brown, “And currently have some 40km growing in membrane lined trenches in 100 m long runs.”
Once the hedging has grown to a height of around 1.8 to 2 m, it is lifted in 2.5 m long sections for easy transportation to site. The Avant is then used with a small crane attachment to lift the sections off the delivery vehicle and carry them to the prepared planting trench.
Mr. Jenkins continued: “Besides being easy to transport to site, the Avant has the power, manoeuvrability and compact dimensions to access the tight spaces we often have to work in with ease.”
To maximise the machine’s versatility, Practicality Brown has also obtained a variety of different attachments including a set of pallet forks and a mower.
The 635 model chosen by the company is powered by a reliable and economical Kubota diesel engine developing 28 kW (37.5 hp) and features an articulated chassis and 4-wheel hydrostatic drive which provides outstanding manoeuvrability and traction at all times.