Farmers rely on information sources to direct crop input decisions, however, many fail to account for the soil’s characteristics and the variability of the weather. Once the seeding is complete, farmers have few options to measure the real-time changes in crop input demands and spatial patterns in the field.
This project is evaluating the use of the EM38 soil conductivity sensor as a real-time soil moisture mapping tool. While static crop yield projections are based only on pre-season information which is often ineffective, real-time data collected in-season could allow farmers to use a near real-time efficiency of crop production inputs such as water and nitrogen fertilizer.
Measure real-time soil parameters and detect changes using in-season soil EC surveys
Improve yield projection accuracy using in-season soil EC data
Evaluate potential to manage water inputs using real-time EC data using a proof of concept on-farm trial
Evaluate potential to manage dryland nitrogen fertilizer inputs using real-time EC data using a proof of concept on-farm trial
Measure GHG emission risks
Locations: Lethbridge, AB
This study uses a field-scale precision agriculture approach including two 160-acre fields for two years each. One field will be under irrigation and the other will be a dryland location. The irrigation site will evaluate the use of in-season data for water management while the dryland site will evaluate data for nitrogen management. Year one, the project will evaluate the uses and efficacy of in-season EC data. Year two, the project will test the application of this data for crop input management.
This project is currently in progress. As we move forward, we’ll update you with some more information!
Check back in winter 2020 for this section.
EM38 in Season Soil Moisture Research Plot Shots June 2, 2020
Moulin IHARF Var Rate Feb 2019.pptx
Farming Smarter Magazine, Fall 2014, pg 16-17
Farming Smarter Magazine, Spring 2016, pg 18-19
Top Crop Manager, Western Edition, March 2016, pg 20-25
Western Producer, March 3, 2016, pg 75