What is in this article?:
- Expert irrigation systems remove guesswork for producers
- Extensivley evaluated, validated
- Computerized expert systems for various farming operations like irrigation have been around for a number of years now, but they’re continually being updated, evolving with the needs of growers.
- Irrigator Pro for cotton and corn have been developed and validated and have recently gained significant adoption.
Extensivley evaluated, validated
Irrigator Pro for peanuts, says Ingram, has been extensively evaluated and validated in replicated research plots as well as commercial trials with cooperating farmers. Yield increases of more than 300 pounds per acre and 2 percentage point increases in Sound Mature Kernels and Sound Splits have been demonstrated. The program has been validated in all major U.S. peanut-producing regions, and recommendations are specific to growing regions.
Irrigator Pro for cotton and corn have also been developed and validated and have recently gained significant adoption, says Ingram. The requirements vary from the peanut model with installation of three soil moisture sensors at depths of 8 inches, 16 inches and 24 inches. Readings are taken during the season to collect the data to be input into the model to generate recommendations.
Growers should follow manufacturers’ preparation and installation recommendations that accompany the sensors, test them, and then install at depths of 8, 16 and 24 inches in the row, after the crop has emerged. Rainfall events should be recorded from the day of planting until sensors are installed and readings are entered.
Data specific to each field is required such as soil type and irrigation capacity.
To begin entering data, growers simply enter farm information, then individual fields, and the data for those fields as it occurs. When sensor readings are entered, recommendations can be retrieved advising if and/or when to irrigate, an amount, and when to check the sensors again. A comment section is also included for any information that you may want to reference later in the season.
MoisMis 2020 is an Xcel spreadsheet and workbook that operates in Xcel 2007 but is also compatible with Xcel 97-2003.
The program uses Daily Data inputs of rainfall, irrigation and soil moisture tension (SMT) at 9 inches and 18 inches with crop water-use curves to schedule irrigation up to five days in the future. Rainfall and SMT inputs are needed only two times per week, three to four days apart.