A producer's yields are highly dependent on the inputs provided to the crop. Just as important is the time at which those inputs are provided. For corn, this means ensuring moisture is available during the pollination stage. Inadequate moisture during this key time can cause significantly lower yields. However, having too much moisture can be damaging as well.
The quality of a crop can also be affected if correct moisture levels are not maintained during fruit fill. In processing tomatoes, moisture levels are lowered in the final weeks of the season. This ensures that tomatoes are produced that have appropriate brix levels, high solids/sugars, to bring the highest possible price for the producer.
John Deere Field Connect provides detailed soil moisture levels throughout the growing season. When combined with optional environmental sensors, producers have a wealth of site-specific information at their fingertips. This ability to monitor moisture levels and key environmental conditions means decisions can be made around those key crop stages, allowing producers to make informed moisture management decisions.
Energy costs are rising, water conservation practices including allocations are becoming more prevalent, and chemical application continues to be a significant input cost to a producer’s operations. John Deere Field Connect can provide producers the information needed to ensure that irrigation is used only when it is required, thereby reducing the tendency to overwater.
Running an irrigation system only when needed will save on fuel costs, energy costs for the pumps, and reduce the risk of washing chemical applications away from where the crop can use it. In areas with water restrictions, saving water today could make the difference between having a crop next season and not.
The John Deere Field Connect™ soil moisture monitoring can potentially help to increase the profit versus conventional gun irrigation up to 35 percent in a tomato field.
|Drip irrigation without Field Connect|
|Drip irrigation with Field Connect|
Source: Consorzio Interegionale Ortofrutticoli Report, 2007-2010
The John Deere Field Connect™ solution offers optional environmental sensors to enable producers to make decisions with site-specific information pertaining to the environment.
Available sensors collect information on air temperature, soil temperature, solar radiation levels, and precipitation. This information can be used to calculate many measurements that aid in determining depletion rates of soil moisture, timing for field applications, and field preparedness for various activities. One calculation is reference evapotranspiration. Calculated from environmental sensor values, reference evapotranspiration (ET) has been shown as a daily value on the landing page. This value can be viewed as a data layer on the graph, allowing for trending and historical data display.
Leaf wetness sensors are also available to aid in disease modeling and prevention activities. When paired with a John Deere Field Connect Gateway and its reliable communication systems, these environmental sensors can provide key information to optimize a producer’s operation.
John Deere Field Connect environmental sensors and attachments:
With so many options available to producers, there is endless variation in the types of field configurations that a producer can use. John Deere Field Connect™ can be used in irrigated fields utilizing drip irrigation, center pivot systems, furrow irrigation, and a host of others, helping the producer to schedule the appropriate irrigation.
Tiled field situations provide another opportunity for utilizing the system. While moisture may be plentiful, a producer’s ability to control the movement of moisture away from the field can be critical. In these fields, John Deere Field Connect can be used to determine when to open and close tile gates to ensure moisture levels are optimized.
Moisture information can also be important in chemical applications as well, enabling producers to make the most of their inputs, by ensuring soil moisture content and environmental conditions are appropriate for the application. This is true whether or not the field has systems in place to control moisture levels.
John Deere FarmSight provides an industry-leading solution that combines intelligent technology and dealer services in a unique way. This will give new insights into operations and the capability to optimize the performance of a business in ways that were simply not possible a few years ago.
John Deere Field Connect is a great example for how dealers can deliver services as part of a John Deere FarmSight services package.
With John Deere FarmSight services, dealers can help producers to:
Save time – for probe placement, environmental sensor installation, and system set up
Save stress – by being prepared through first-class system training
Gain insight – through qualified interpretation of data readings or crop specific recordings
There is a wide range of dealer services existing for John Deere Field Connect. The exact contents and pricing of individual service packages will vary from dealer to dealer.