Potatoes may, in many ways, be the perfect candidate for precision agriculture, according to an article on PotatoPro.com.
They’re a high-volume, high-value and high-input crop and the industry has already invested more than other sectors in soil and drainage mapping, variable rate technology and management zones, according to one agronomist who works closely with potato growers.
Trevor Thornton of Crop Care Consulting says all these factors, and the way quality trumps quantity when it comes to crop value, all add up to a convincing case for adopting precision agriculture.
Most of his clients are already using variable rate application for nutrients like phosphorus, potassium, nitrogen, and magnesium as well as lime, an input tailor-made for the low-pH-loving potato plant.
“Some of the farms are variable rating just a couple of products and then doing a blend across the field,” Thornton says.