Case Study #3


An example site was setup in Marsden. A map of the site is shown in figure 1.

Figure 1

From this screenshot, we can see that the site in the centre has a river to the south and houses north. A grower at this site should avoid spray drift into that area to avoid harming aquatic organisms and avoid any drift that might harm people living in the houses to the north. By clicking on the field, a weather forecast similar to figure 2 should appear. This output contains masses of valuable information that a grower can use. Starting with the bottom graph, a summary of spray drift conditions is shown. The green squares show the best conditions for applying agrochemicals while the red squares show when spraying is not recommended.

The second graph shows forecast wind speed and direction. Direction is shown at the very top. Whenever the wind is headed towards a sensitive area that you nominate, a red square will show at the top. In this example, a red square can be seen directly above February 25th at 00:00. Whenever the wind is headed 45 degrees or 1 compass direction towards the sensitive area a pink square will show. In the example shown in figure 2, pink squares can be seen starting February 25th at 03:00.

The next graph up shows forecast temperature, rainfall and rainfall probability. In this example, rain is forecast on February 25th at 03:00 with a low probability. The rain forecast is expected to continue until February 25th at 09:00. The temperature forecast during this time is about 5-6° Celsius. Using this information, some warning of a wet weather disease infection period is shown.

The very top graph shows a humidity and leaf wetness forecast. If this information is added to the information shown in the previous graph, and you know the time and temperature required for an infection period to occur, a spraying decision can be made. Apple scab for example, requires 29.5 hours of wetness at 5° Celsius to produce a light infection period.

Figure 2

Putting all this together it can be seen that an infection event may be due soon. Applying a spray on February 25th at 21.00 will be able to minimize drift towards sensitive areas; in this case a westerly wind. Sprays applied directly after that will drift directly towards the sensitive area in the south. Another spraying opportunity exists on February 27th at 06:00. Spray drift conditions are good, and any drift should travel to the west.

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