• Apr 05, 2017

Include In-Season Monitoring Tech in Your Product Portfolio

The R7® Field Monitoring Tool from WinField United is a technology option that enables more efficient scouting and allows up-to-date crop information to be delivered to you and your customers throughout the season so applications can be more precisely planned.
As a WinField United master agronomy advisor working with StateLine Cooperative in north central Iowa, I have the opportunity to work extensively with the Field Monitoring Tool. For example, I might use it to enter information from a field trial where I’m evaluating high-yield management strategies and compare that to a field where I’m evaluating a farmer’s own good management. This helps me validate the end result and have conversations with my farmers throughout the season about what they are doing that’s working well and what our trials indicate they might want to consider changing up.
StateLine Cooperative sellers also have the ability to use the Field Monitoring Tool to enter information about their customers’ fields, spot areas of concern and quickly determine which ones they need to target for scouting.
Brings a yield bump
The cooperative has had some notable successes with the Field Monitoring Tool. In 2016, localized field trials that maximized use of the tool in corn had between 35 and 45 bushel-per-acre yield increases. To achieve this, we used the tool to determine what inputs to use, when to use them and where they were needed most to keep the corn more offensive throughout a greater portion of the growing season. Despite some added input costs, this type of increase would likely result in a good return on a grower’s investment.
Delivers in-season imagery
The Field Monitoring Tool offers a daily summary of field performance and frequent in-season satellite imagery that alerts farmers and agronomists to the effects of severe weather, weed escapes, disease outbreaks, insect pressure or nutrient deficiencies. We use this to pinpoint areas that need investigation. Then, we geo-reference those spots so that scouts can walk affected fields to pull a soil sample; a tissue sample; and if the corn is less than 12 inches tall, perform a late-spring soil nitrate test. We use data gleaned from these trials to help us make an accurate recommendation to correct the problem.
Evaluates use of crop inputs
The Field Monitoring Tool also helps farmers see increased biomass achieved through the use of particular products. For example, it could validate the use of Ascend® plant growth regulator. Or, it could indicate whether foliar applications of MAX-IN® micronutrients are performing optimally. Any macronutrient deficiency, such as nitrogen, can also be detected.
Adds value to the R7® Tool
The R7® Tool allows users to view field maps with historical data, soil variability and other vital information. With the Field Monitoring Tool as an add-on to the R7® Tool, there is now one more value discussion agronomists and retail sellers can have to assist growers with making more well-informed decisions. And it’s not just a matter of monitoring fields, but being able to take that information and then make product recommendations to help restore crop health so that greater yield potential can be achieved.
For more information on incorporating the Field Monitoring Tool into your retail operation, talk with your WinField United representative.