• » News
  • » High resolution sensors to help vineyard growers identify nutrient deficiencies

High resolution sensors to help vineyard growers identify nutrient deficiencies

High resolution sensors to help vineyard growers identify nutrient deficiencies

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture has awarded a $676,000 grant to a pair of Cornell researchers aiming to use high resolution sensors to help vineyard growers identify nutrient deficiencies.

The researchers – Terry Bates, senior research associate at the Cornell Lake Erie Research and Extension Laboratory, and Justine Vanden Heuvel, professor of horticulture – are both from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Like most plants, proper nutrient uptake is critical to vine health and fruit yield. But identifying deficiencies in nitrogen, potassium, magnesium and other key nutrients is a challenging, labor-intensive and expensive process for vineyard managers. It requires manually collecting leaves during the growing season and mailing the samples to a lab for analysis.

Not only is this costly, but in New York state, nutrient levels can vary significantly from location to location – even within a single vineyard block – due to variations in soil type. Given these challenges, growers typically opt for a one-size-fits-all approach, rather than fine-tuning their management acre by acre.

When it comes to vine nutrition, growers often end up applying fertilizers across entire vineyard blocks, instead of to the sections that need it most.

“Over-applying fertilizers like nitrogen can contribute to leaching issues, which is especially undesirable in wine regions near bodies of water,” Vanden Heuvel said. “[But] data from [our new] sensors can tell growers exactly which portions of a vineyard block need fertilizer, reducing the area that receives an application.”

Vanden Heuvel will develop a measurement mechanism that combines both ground-based sampling and satellite imaging to quantify where nutrient deficiencies are. And by doing some vineyard sampling as part of the approach, growers will effectively be doing what she calls “ground truthing” – using real numbers to support satellite measurements, ensuring that growers are getting precise information.

One of the benefits to this monitoring approach, Vanden Heuvel said, is its accessibility and affordability to grape operations of all sizes.

Bates has already been studying vineyard health through the Efficient Vineyard Project (EVP), and he will use this knowledge to develop nutrient sensors. The EVP takes soil, canopy, yield and sugar content sensing data to generate standard vineyard maps to help managers evaluate the growth, productivity and quality of plants in commercial vineyards. Growers then use this information to create more accurate maps of their own vineyards to better support their management practices.

In collaboration with Jan van Aardt, a professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology’s Center for Imaging Science, Bates will develop new proximal nutrient sensors that detect deficiencies before they become visible to field workers.

Bates and van Aardt are matching remote imaging measurements with ground measurements to set a standard for vineyard nutrition health. In combination with the sensors, this will allow growers to make real-time nutrient management decisions.

“The most important part of the project,” Bates said, “is to help growers manage vineyards more efficiently with a focus on profitability and environmental sustainability.”

Bates and Vanden Heuvel’s award is part of a total grant worth $4.75 million; collaborators on the overall grant include researchers from Washington State University, University of California at Davis, Oregon State University and the USDA Agricultural Research Service. Of the total grant, $1 million has been awarded, with the remainder contingent on the project’s progress.

Source: Cornell University

Published on 10/19/2020
Related sheets
    Enoforum 2023 competition: an all-female podium
    Who are the winners of Enoforum Web Scientists 2023 edition?
    An Italian researcher, Dr Paola Bambina from the University of Palermo, is the winner of the First Prize at the 2023 edition of Enoforum Web Scientists, which was attended by 37 researchers from 9 ...
    Published on:03/22/2023
    Smoke Taint: recognition for “Innovators of the Year” extensive research
    UC Davis enologist Anita Oberholster and two of her colleagues from other universities are being recognized for their research on how wildfire smoke affects grapes, grapevines and wine composition
    Published on:02/02/2023
    WICA’s crowd-writing: the winners of “The Wine Industry of Tomorrow”
    6 innovative wine auxiliary companies winners for the crowd-writing contest of WICA - the Wine Industry Collaboration Alliance
    6 innovative wine auxiliary companies have been named winners for the crowd-writing contest of WICA - the Wine Industry Cluster Alliance of EPAWI, the European Partnership for the Auxiliary Wine In...
    Published on:01/17/2023
    Lisöra, the grape variety of the mountains of Piacenza
    Characteristics of the variety studied within the SalViBio project
    The Lisöra is a grape variety rediscovered decades ago by Prof. Fregoni and his collaborators in the upper Trebbia Valley, between Cerignale and Corte Brugnatella. Together with other minor vines, ...
    Published on:02/20/2023
    Severe drought and extreme heat pose a new threat to wine production
    In 2022, despite the heat wave that touched many regions of the world, global wine production volume is expected to be at a level similar to the one observed last year. This would be the fourth con...
    Published on:01/10/2023
    Research captures the impacts of vineyard floor management
    Wine Australia
    The more plant species and plant cover you have on your entire vineyard floor, the higher soil organic carbon and water infiltration rates you will see as a result, preliminary findings of a new st...
    Published on:12/13/2022
© All Right Reserved
ISSN 1826-1590 VAT: IT01286830334
powered by Infonet Srl Piacenza
- A +
ExecTime : 1,515625