ABOUT THE SWEDEN DRILL AND HOW EVERYTHING STARTED
The Sweden Drill was invented by Börje Gustavsson about 25 years ago, and since then it
has been manufactured in the small factory next to the house at Maskingatan in Skurup.
The Sweden Drill is a unique hand driven soil drill used by a large number of park- and
garden administrations, cemeteries, gardeners, growers, building companies, etc.
Through the years, the drill has been spread and distributed to many places in the world;
customers has brought the drill to Colombia, Tanzania and Afghanistan, just to mention a fex examples.
It all started about 25 years ago, when Börje Gustavsson was annoyed with the spade.
-It has had the same appearance ever since it was invented. There has been no development.
Together with his father, Bror Gustavsson (he too is an innovator and developer of, among
other things, agricultural machines) he invented a hand driven soil drill which made it easy
to make holes for casting directly in the ground, i.e. for poles and posts, and for drilling
for water, planting, etc.
Quite soon, Börje tried to put his kitchen waste into the drilled holes, and by this his own
soilization - a method for breaking down biological material - was invented.
-But actually the method has been practiced by nature itself all the time, ever since the
beginning of the world. But what a growth I had in my garden! The plants track down the nutrience
by themselves and that way they get the maximum amount of nutrience that they can handle.
Börje is the main opponent of composting, mainly because the nutrience (when the break down
process takes place above the soil) becomes gases that emits to the air for no good.
Soilization, on the other hand, goes hand in hand with the nature's own recycling process.
Many people are hesistant to soilization, but one thing is for sure: the method makes
everything grow! And what could be a better proof?
In 1995 he grew a cucumber at 10 lbs, which got into the Guinness Book of Records, and a year later
he won his first growing competition. This was at Sofiero Gardens in Helsingborg. He won with a
pumpkin at 119 lbs - a number that sounds quite tiny now some years later, when he has grown the
second heaviest pumpkin of Europe at 1000 lbs!
The method that makes everything grow he calls , and rests on three principles:
1. Deep looseing of the soil.
2. Soilization - to let biological garbage and waste rotten directly in the soil. Kitchen waste,
garden waste, cut grass, latrine, urine, earth closet waste, weed, leaves, sick plants, windfalls,
hedge-cut, twigs, farmyard manure, dog mess,etc is put into 30 - 60 cm deep holes,
close to the plants.
3. Deep watering. Plastic pipes (preferably perforated) are put into drilled holes, for watering.
Börje begins with the preparations for the maximum growing in the fall - this is when the supply
depot of the soil should be refilled.
Diseases and parasites are unusual in Börje's garden, but even if he would get such problems
he is absolutely against artificial manure, anticides and agricultural antibiotics.
Every summer he goes in for growing "the world's largest" of some vegetable. And since a few years
ago, pumpkins has been the main vegetable. Some years he has been growing sunflowers, yellow onions,
tomatoes, squash and carrots. At the moment (August 2004) a 1,5 meter high nettle is growing in
the garden. Börje lets it stay there, and cares for it almost as if it were a pumpkin.
-Well, you never know, maybe it will be the world's largest nettle!
By the end of March or beginning of April he puts the first pumpkin seeds into pots, and after that everything
happens rapidly. In April/May the first pumpkin plant is put into the soil outdoors, after
having carefully chosen one of the seedlings. Choosing which seedling to go in for is a procedure
that takes a lot of time and thinking. Börje takes the seed's genetic history into account;
does the seed have a long history of giant pumpkins, or has only a few giants been grown from
When the plant is put into soil, the growing enters a new phase. Now is the time to see whether
the plant will "root", or if it "quits". Some years Börje has had to dig up the plant and go for
another seedling, if it turns out that the plant didn't root. All these kind of manouvers
demand that the grower is living his life completely with the pumpkin and following it's development
and pace. Taking vacations or just having a lazy day is never to think of if you want to grow
a giant pumpkin! Growing a giant demands several hours of "pumpkin care" every day!
Stop composting, and get the soilization started!