Senwes Scenario Augustus / September 2017 - Page 14

•••• T RADE N E W S Precision farming > CONTINUED FROM PAGE 11  PRECISION SOIL PREPARATION The impact of surface water management on crop yield is often overlooked. The key to management of waterlogging and erosion is detailed pictures of ele- vation across your field and/or farm. This is linked to soil type. Soil preparation can successfully be implemented after analyses of: • detailed soil survey maps, e.g. soil type and topo­ graphy, • soil physical property maps, e.g. texture and plant available water capacity • yield maps of the previous crop, This will provide yield potential and management zones in your field/farm. From these maps the correct agricultural practices and implements can be identified to achieve optimum results with soil preparation. Depending on the texture and topography, soil preparation is traditionally the most energy-consum- ing aspect of farming, requiring significant inputs of fuel and time. The wrong implement can increase the risk of erosion and crop failure.  PRECISION SEEDING Critical factors to achieve higher yields with less seed is correct planting depth and proper row spacing. Combined with geo-mapping, this can ensure: • More seeds are planted in soil with high yield po- tential 12 AUG/SEP 2017 • SENWES Scenario • Less seeds are planted in low yield potential areas • Effective variable rate application (VRT) of fertili­ ser. Fast and uniform germination ensures a crop of high yield and optimum use of resources. It is thus im- portant to consider soil and climate properties as well as tillage practices in relation to planter properties to ensure that the planter is equipped with technology to ensure effective and accurate planting during the opti- mum planting window.  PRECISION CROP MANAGEMENT During this phase plants need: • the right amount of top-dressing at the right time, and • proper management of weeds, pests and diseases.