Precision Agriculture is a way of making our farming systems more accurate, controlled, and sustainable. This is yet another reason why it is essential we have the best of the best equipment and technology, such as out tier 4 Tractors with GPS technology, drone technology, and FieldNet programming. Here is a break down of what Precision Agriculture will do to create incredible results for Silver Reef Organic Farms.
First, the foundation must be laid. With Precision Ag this is achieved by first gridding the soils. You take the grids (2.5 acres) and identify the soils nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Taking the time to understand the soil biology throughout the field is important so that we can understand our production capacity. Once we have each acre out of each field gridded we then will put the collected data into our computer module and will print out a “prescription” for each field. This is where it gets really cool!
During planting the prescription gets plugged into the tractor and as the planter goes through the field it puts more seeds in portions of the field where it is thriving in nutrient rich, organic matter and less where it is lacking or the growth prediction is lower. By implementing this technique we will cut down on seeds wasted by not planting as much in areas where they will not be able to grow as well. Yet achieving another sustainable action!
With Precision Agriculture there’s not only a plan for the seed being planted, but there is already a plan set in motion for the growing season to come. Meaning, the prescription will also include irrigation ratings. From the data collected at the beginning and from our drone technology we will be able to understand each acre of field and the ability and/or inability to absorb water based on soil composition. This will allow for us to save water where we can and utilize more where the land may need it so it can produce higher yields.
So, once we have made it through the growing season it will then be time to harvest! We will take the harvest data from the combine, add the seed rate and the production rate and begin to implement a growing plan for the following year. This Precision Farming implementation plan will project a perfect seed rate and perfect water rate, giving us opportunity to have a perfect harvest the following year!
It is important to note here that patience is everything when it comes to farming. This is important because it will take us a full year to implement variable rate farming. Which includes variable rate seed, irrigation, and harvest data. This coming growing season we will be doing a blog series on what we are doing with Precision Agriculture. So check back in often and join the journey with us!