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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: PARAMETERIZING GPFARM: AN AGRICULTURAL DECISION SUPPORT SYSTEM FOR INTEGRATING SCIENCE, ECONOMICS, RESOURCE USE, AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS

Authors
item MCMASTER, GREGORY
item ASCOUGH, JAMES
item Shaffer, Marvin
item Byrne, Patrick - COLORADO STATE UNIVERSITY
item Haley, Scott - COLORADO STATE UNIVERSITY
item Nielsen, David - ARS-AKRON
item Andales, Allan
item Dunn, Gale
item WELTZ, MARK
item AHUJA, LAJPAT

Submitted to: International Society of Ecological Modeling Annual Meetings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: June 24, 2002
Publication Date: June 24, 2002
Citation: Mcmaster, G.S., Ascough Ii, J.C., Shaffer, M.J., Byrne, P.F., Haley, S.D., Nielsen, D.C., Andales, A.A., Dunn, G.H., Weltz, M.A., Ahuja, L.R. 2002. Parameterizing gpfarm: an agricultural decision support system for integrating science, economics, resource use, and environmental impacts. International Society of Ecological Modeling Annual Meetings. IN: A.E. Rizzoli and A.J. Jakeman (Eds.), Integrated Assessment and Decision Support Proceedings of the 1st Biennial Meeting of the IEMSS. June 24-27, 2002, Lugano, Switzerland. Vol. 1, pg 72-77.

Interpretive Summary: Few farmers and ranchers adopt agricultural software such as decision support systems (DSS). While numerous decision aids are available, most are too difficult for producers to use, exclude components necessary for meaningful use on farms and ranches, and usually suffer from poor understanding by scientists of producer needs and how they process information. The USDA-ARS Great Plains Framework for Agricultural Resource Management (GPFARM) decision support system has been developed that integrates a graphical user interface, data from farms and ranches, soil-plant-weed-water-N-erosion simulation modules, an economic analysis package, and a multicriteria decision making (MCDM) toolbox. The purpose is to assist U.S. Great Plains producers in selecting alternative management scenarios for whole farm and ranch systems that are economically viable and environmentally sound. A major user requirement for GPFARM is to make the DSS as easy and quick to set up and use as possible. This means that plant parameters must be supplied to the user. Developing this parameter database for a large regional area differing in climate, soils, and management practices is made very difficult both by the known variety by environment interaction (V x E) and the uncertainty in the variability (and distribution) of most parameters. This paper addresses the work, and complications, of creating a crop parameter database focusing on winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Some conclusions drawn from this analysis are: 1) for both thermal time and yield, the relative rankings of varieties were not consistent whether considering within or between treatments across years, showing the difficulty of simulating the V x E interaction, and 2) selected parameters must be set for at least dryland and irrigated conditions to better capture the V x E interaction. iemss proceedings

Technical Abstract: Few farmers and ranchers adopt agricultural software such as decision support systems (DSS). While numerous decision aids are available, most are too difficult for producers to use, exclude components (e.g., economic budgeting, weeds, multicriteria decision analysis) necessary for meaningful use on farms and ranches, and usually suffer from poor understanding by scientists of producer needs and how they process information. The USDA-ARS Great Plains Framework for Agricultural Resource Management (GPFARM) decision support system has been developed that integrates a graphical user interface, data from farms and ranches, soil-plant-weed-water-N-erosion simulation modules, an economic analysis package, and a multicriteria decision making (MCDM) toolbox. The purpose is to assist U.S. Great Plains producers in selecting alternative management scenarios for whole farm and ranch systems that are economically viable and environmentally sound. A major user requirement for GPFARM is to make the DSS as easy and quick to set up and use as possible. This means that plant parameters must be supplied to the user. Developing this parameter database for a large regional area differing in climate, soils, and management practices is made very difficult both by the known genotype by environment interaction (G X E) and the uncertainty in the variability (and distribution) of most parameters. This paper addresses the work, and complications, of creating a crop parameter database focusing on winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). One important plant parameter (thermal time from sowing to maturity) and predicting grain yield (the result of the entire parameter database) are both examined from the perspective of the G X E interaction. Some conclusions drawn from this analysis are: 1) for both thermal time and yield, the relative rankings of varieties were not consistent whether considering within or between treatments across years, showing the difficulty of simulating the G X E interaction, and 2) selected parameters must be set for at least dryland and irrigated conditions to better capture the G X E interaction.

Last Modified: 8/27/2014