Florida Water-Quality Plans Include Focus on Septic Systems

Karla Arboleda Florida, Technology, Top Posts, Water

By Andrea Albertin and Mary Lusk As the state of Florida moves forward with watershed and springs basin restoration plans, also known as basin management action plans (BMAPS), reducing nitrogen loads to degraded water bodies is a priority in many areas. Nitrogen is an essential plant nutrient, but in excess in certain aquatic ecosystems it can lead to water-quality deterioration …

Researching New Fertilizer Technologies in North Florida

Karla Arboleda Florida, Research, Technology, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda To find efficiency in reducing nitrogen levels in soil, researchers at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) are working with several technologies. Bob Hochmuth, a UF/IFAS Extension agent at the North Florida Research and Education Center – Suwannee Valley (NFREC-SV), coordinates controlled-release fertilizer research. The work aims to improve the functionality of …

Updating North Carolina Research Stations With New Technology

Karla Arboleda North Carolina, Research, Technology, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda North Carolina State University (NCSU) and the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services are working to update research stations with new technology. Together, the two institutions will improve technology in 18 research stations across the state. Jason Ward, an assistant professor in the biological and agricultural engineering department at NCSU, talked about the motivation for …

USDA Funds $77.8 Million for Sustainable Agriculture Research, Includes NCSU

Karla Arboleda North Carolina, Research, Technology, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture invested $77.8 million toward efforts to support sustainable agriculture research. North Carolina State University (NCSU) is one of eight universities funded for research. Chris Reberg-Horton, professor of cropping systems at NCSU, and Steven Mirsky, agro-ecologist with the USDA Agricultural Research Service, are codirecting a team …

Preparing for Farm Technology

Abbey Taylor Alabama, Florida, Georgia, innovation, Technology, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

The world of artificial intelligence, robots and big data is upon us, and agriculture will not be left out. Nobody knows this better than Vonnie Estes, vice president of technology at the Produce Marketing Association (PMA). Her job is to work with farmers nationwide to help them learn how to adopt such technologies. Estes also serves as a resource for …

What’s Keeping Growers From Adopting Technology?

Abbey Taylor Technology, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Karla Arboleda Precision agriculture technologies are not as widely used as they are available, and researchers want to figure out why this is the case for Florida growers. Tara Wade, assistant professor at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) in the Food and Resource Economics Department, is studying this issue. She says global positioning …

Cutting Costs With Smart Sprayers

Abbey Taylor Technology, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Yiannis Ampatzidis Traditional broadcast sprayers usually treat the entire field to control pest populations, potentially resulting in unnecessary application to areas that do not require treatment. These sprayers apply agrochemicals uniformly, even though distribution of weeds is typically patchy. This results in wastage of valuable compounds, increased costs, crop damage risk, pest resistance to chemicals, environmental pollution and contamination …

‘Harvesting Is Just the Beginning’

Abbey Taylor innovation, Strawberry, Technology, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Ernie Neff An experimental robotic strawberry harvester appears to barely creep through a field in Duette, Florida. That belies a flurry of activity occurring out of sight. “It’s walking speed as it moves through the field, but the robots are moving at a good clip inside,” says Scott Jantz. “These robots are spinning underneath … furiously picking plants.” Jantz …