Cotton defoliation is only months away in most of the West. The defoliation process – naturally and chemical use - allows farmers to ready the plants for harvest.
Pedro Andrade, University of Arizona, says cotton defoliation is an art developed by understanding cotton physiology, years of experience, and monitoring the weather.
The UA's Pedro Andrade, left, and John Heun are conducting research on measuring plant canopy development to improve yields in wheat and measure cotton plant advancement prior to defoliation.
Optical sensors, mounted on the front frame of this test rig, could help maximize the effectiveness of cotton chemical defoliants and speed up the defoliation process.
John Heun operates the test rig at the Maricopa Agricultural Center.
Western Farm Press