Nangle & Niesen is a highly successful Irish wholesale nursery specialising in the production of over 200 varieties of semi-mature trees at its 100 acre site at Aherla, Co. Cork.
With over 35 years experience in tree production, the nursery's directors, Ronan Nangle and Matthew Niesen, spend considerable time and money in ensuring that their production techniques are fully up-to-date and comparable with the best in Europe, with the work of their nursery staff made easier by five Kubota compact tractors.
The first Kubota was bought back in 1980 when it was the only compact model then available in Ireland. Impressed with the machine's versatility and reliability the directors decided to stick with the brand for future compact tractor purchases. They now have an all-Kubota fleet of five compacts of varying sizes, which handle a variety of jobs around the nursery throughout the year.
"They are all highly manoeuvrable machines, well designed and easy to drive and maintain, and our operators like the comfortable seating areas as they have to spend a lot of time in them," said Mr Niesen.
Two of the latest 40hp STV Series machines, whose versatility the nursery exploits to the full, are the most recent purchases. They are used for levelling between the lines of trees using a variety of attachments from cultivators and power harrows to levelling bars and a seeder to leave a grass finish between the lines of trees. In Nangle & Niesen's experience this is a greener method of tree production, reducing chemical usage greatly.
Sub-quality trees are disposed of with a wood chipper that is attached to the PTO as needed, eliminating the need for burning. The grass between the rows of trees is cut using a flail mower, with any prunings mulched at the same time.
A 25hp B2410 is used exclusively for spraying weeds with fungicides along the lines of trees, using a spray boom attachment, while a 27hp B2710 fitted with a specialised tree removal attachment lifts bare root trees out of the ground and shakes out any excess soil. A variety of different sized trailers are used with the tractors to fetch and carry materials and plants around the nursery.
All of the machines were supplied by local Kubota tractor and groundcare equipment dealer, Atkins Grass Machinery of Cork.
"Atkins gives us a great service and I like the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff," said Mr Niesen. "They always let us have any spare parts we may need for the tractors exactly when they say they will be delivered."
The nursery also has a 27hp B9200 extra-narrow model, which Matthew Niesen bought 20 years ago from a company in Holland which supplies him with specialist tree growing equipment. It too is also used with the specialist tree removal attachment, while its loading forks come in useful for general pallet work.
"Kubota compacts are ideal for the type of varied work we need them to do at the nursery," said Mr Niesen. "They have proved totally reliable over the years, which is why we keep coming back for more."