The WSU Farmers Network’s soil-themed webinar series continues this week with live presentations focused on advanced data collection and technology on the farm. Soil Health Outreach Coordinator Carol McFarland said they will focus on tools to conduct on-farm research include designing on-farm research trials, public data sources, data collection using sensors, automated data analysis, as well as a farmer’s experience of variable rate applications using sensors and drones.
“For anyone who has been interested in thinking about spatial variability in their field and exploring what it looks like to manage inputs according to the spatial variability that they are seeing in their field, this is really the way to start into that. The biggest focus is how do we start looking at whether these tools are worthwhile and how do we use on-farm experimentation to determine that.”
This month’s series is part of a $4 million NRCS project that is just being launched. The project aims to work with participating farmers to improve fertilizer and seed management efficiency for cotton, corn, soy and wheat producers in the U.S. WSU Farmers Network is leading the extension effort of the project.
McFarland added the live Zoom webinars will take place through the 11th, from 9:00 am to 11:00 am.
“I think a really big reason that growers would want to explore precision management strategies is to optimize their input and match them to the outputs that they’re expecting and to use data to reduce the inputs. It’s a way that you could reduce inputs on places on the farm where they are not really being used well and then really maximize productivity in places where those resources are being used well.”
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