Stevens Implement Company is one of the leading John Deere dealers in the Midwest. Founded in 1957 by John and Helen Stevens, the dealership is now in its third generation of family ownership. Stevens Implement is dedicated to customer satisfaction. We take pride in helping our customers solve problems and maximize productivity. We are proud to offer the complete line of John Deere agricultural and turf equipment and we gladly take trades of competitive equipment.
StevensImplement.com! Your source for new and used tractors, combines, implements and lawn care equipment. We've been helping people get the most out of their farm operations and home landscape projects since 1957. We invite you to visit our retail locatoins in Petersburg and Havana, Illinois.
Background: Tractors were much smaller in 1957 and often designed to do one job at a time when John & Helen Stevens, along with son Ron bought a John Deere dealership in Petersburg. Their first shop was located near where the high school is today. They later built a new building in 1959 where the family continues to prosper today on Rt. 97 on the north side of Petersburg. They now operate in Petersburg and Havana serving a wide range of loyal farm customers and a growing market of consumer products. “ In addition to traditional tractors and combines, we sell name brand products just in time for Christmas, including ERTL toy tractors and trucks, rugged John Deere Gators and ATVs, electric powered Gators and trucks for kids, Stihl saws and lawn equipment, Deere logo clothing, Dixie Chopper mowers and much more. In fact, every year sales continue to increase in this line. John Deere tractors are number one in brand recognition and agricultural equipment sales is one of the bright spots in the economy,” according to Derrick Stevens.
Owners: The Stevens family has operated their successful John Deere dealership for over 50 years. The third generation is now working the business as sons Dennis, Derrick and Drew work alongside their father Ron. They plan to continue the family tradition some day with the next generation of Stevens.
Changes in Agriculture: This is an amazing time for agriculture. The technology has advanced at an impressive rate with much more precise soil preparation, planting and chemical treatments. “Back in the 50s, farms were much smaller and more self-reliant. In those days, people had more livestock and a variety of crops to feed and support their families. Ron Stevens reflected, “Back then a tractor mainly performed one task at a time. There were many 2 or 4 row planters and they didn’t shell corn in the field as people put their crops in cribs. Back then a 160 or 400-acre farm was large where today farm operations can manage several thousand acres. When the business started, there were lots of 40 and 50 horse tractors sold and a 70 horse was considered large. Today’s tractors perform multiple tasks and are much larger, many in the 250 – 350 HP range and some exceeding 500 HP.
Technology has made tremendous advances in modern farming practices.Tractors now have dual or triple wheels on the front, feature four wheel drive for better traction and utilize automatic steering systems to improve efficiency. A GPS system is now available in some tractors that actually steers the tractors to within an inch of the programmed path they need to take. Farmers can program zones in the field and can be at every 20’, 60’, etc. so that the tractor follows the programmed path. Seed placement is now much more precise and some rows are as narrow as 20” versus a more common spacing at 40” which can dramatically increase yields. Fertilizers can be sprayed much more accurately and precisely where needed, versus more broadcast spreading in the past, saving chemicals and the environment,” according to Ron.
The goal is help customers increase efficiency and yields through a complete and integrated system of tractors, planters, tillage equipment, applicators, sprayers, and harvesting equipment. John Deere can tie this equipment together with advanced guidance and monitoring technology so that the farm operator can focus on generating greater yield. Today’s equipment and technology lets farmers get more done in a day, with enhanced safety and lower fatigue. Other advancements make changing crops and implements easier for farmers. Yet, the changes in technology have also made computer diagnostics a necessity. One of the exciting advancements coming in 2011 is remote diagnostics. A Stevens technician will be will be able to access diagnostic information from the office, while the customer’s equipment remains in his shed thus adding efficiency to the customer’s service needs. The tractors locations are also known at any time through GPS tracking. Of course Stevens will continue to offer on-farm services for area farmers.
Future Goals: The farming industry continues to prosper, as agriculture will always be a necessity at home and abroad. Advances in farming have increased productivity and saved vast amounts of time, while also reducing quantities of fuel and chemicals. The Stevens family plans to continue to offer their friendly and dependable service to their much-appreciated customers throughout central Illinois. They also plan to stay on the cutting edge of emerging technologies through their John Deere affiliation and ongoing training and education of staff.
Employees: Stevens Implement has approximately 48 full time staff in Petersburg and Havana, along with some part-time employees.
Summary: Stevens Implement is far more than a tractor and implement sales and service business. Consumers can find some of the most popular national brands for home and garden, including John Deere mowers and Stihl chain saws and lawn equipment. Deere logo clothing is always popular and the farm toys are a big hit with the kids. Anyone with acreage, and certainly hunters can appreciate the rugged 4-wheel drive Gators that can go anywhere and do about anything with electric lift beds and great towing capacity.