Boo-yah! This is for Amy Sills:
Here's an excerpt from the email I received:
The transplanter is hand-pulled and relies on seeding into a system of paper pots that are in a chain. Because the pots are in a chain, they feed themselves through the transplanter. With this transplanter, I can put 264 plants in the ground (one flat) in less than a minute...all while walking upright (no kneeling, crawling or stooping).
Because the pots are in a chain, the in-row spacing is pre-determined. Generally, the system is best suited for closely spaced crops. It is absolutely perfect for allium family crops. It can also be used for things like spinach, chard, many cut flowers, beets, and some herbs. I am still experimenting with various other crops.
I discovered the transplanter while living in Japan a few years ago. I was so excited about it that I not only decided to buy one and bring it back but also made arrangements with the company to import them because they are so well-suited to small farms. The paperpots are not OMRI certified but my WI-based certification agency has approved them for use on my certified organic farm.
The transplanter itself is about $1000. The paper chain pots range from $1.60 to $2.60 per flat. There are other components of the system as well (trays for the paperpots, frames to hold the paperpots open before filling with potting mix, etc.).