NEW TECHNOLOGY & INNOVATION

FIELDNET — WIRELESS IRRIGATION MANAGEMENT

Fieldnet enables you to monitor and control your centre pivots, lateral move irrigators, pumps, end guns, etc from anywhere at any time.
This can significantly reduce labour costs associated with starting, stopping and monitoring equipment.
Fieldnet offers you many advantages including:
• Fully monitor and control your machines from your PC or smartphone
• Graphic status icons show where your started, current position, current and future tasks
• Real-time alerts reduce lost time
• Saves time and money physically checking irrigators
• Unlimited access, unlimited use
• Low set-up and ongoing costs
• Can be installed on most brands of new or existing machines
• Simple easy-to-use
• Monitor and record water usage, energy usage, tank or pond levels
• Monitor weather information including temperature, rainfall, humidity and wind speed
• Run reports

For more information on how Fieldnet’s technology can help you visit www.myfieldnet.com/
or talk to one of Roberts Irrigation’s experienced sales staff.

ZIMMATIC PIVOT WITH MAXFIELD CORNER-ARM, IN ITS THIRD SEASON

Johnny Fraser considers water management one of the keys to profitably growing multiple crops on his New Zealand farm.

Thanks to Precision VRI (Variable Rate Irrigation), a new precision irrigation product from Lindsay, he can plant, grow and harvest his crops when and where he wants in his field.

Precision VRI provides individual sprinkler or zone control. With easy-to-use mapping software, it allows growers to create custom irrigation zones that can be defined by soil type, topography, crop type or field obstacles. The variable rate program is then loaded into the Precision VRI controller that directs individual sprinklers through wireless nodes.

Johhny makes maximum use of Precision VRI to raise irrigated potatoes, peas, sweet corn, silage corn, wheat and barley – all in the same field. His Zimmatic MAXfield Custom Corner System, which includes eight towers plus the corner arm, irrigates a 92 ha (227acre) field which is split into five square blocks for a multitude of crops.

“Basically, I’m using a circle to water square blocks and that’s where Precision VRI comes into play. I now have the flexibility to do whatever I like under that pivot as far as changing crops. I can adjust any time to suit my cropping needs,” Fraser said.

Johnny’s farm is located near Otane on New Zealand’s north island. The climate is similar to California’s so he is able to raise multiple crops throughout the year. Many of his crops, including the peas, potatoes and sweet corn, are processed for food.

“We have heavy soils so managing the water is critical. Precision VRI works perfectly for my farming operation.”

Whilst his cropping patterns vary, a typical scenario would see his pea crop followed by sweet corn and his potato crop followed by wheat or a different crop, all of which are planted and harvested at different times of the year.

“Precision VRI is saving me 30 percent on costs since I don’t have to pump as much water.”

Over the 2009-2010 irrigation season, Johnny used approximately a third less water than he would have used without Precision VRI.

While groundwater, the source for his irrigation, is still plentiful in his area, he predicts managing and using water wisely will become more and more critical in the future.

“As a grower, I believe the single biggest thing you can do to increase yield is to manage your water, just like you manage your fertiliser, chemical and other crop inputs.”

Although he doesn’t chemigate or fertigate at present, he is considering it as Precision VRI gives him the flexibility to do so in the future.

“It’s very simple to run. With Precision VRI, I have unlimited crop and agronomic options. I can plant and harvest when and where I want.”

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