Submitted to: Association for the Advancement of Industrial Crops Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/28/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: The number of flowers and the duration of flowering in a crop are important factors in determining the final yield of many crops. However, the time required to count flowers throughout a growing season makes it difficult to carry out studies in which flower counts are made regularly over an extended number of treatments. A study was undertaken using a true color digital camera to determine the feasibility of using images from the camera to automatically count flowers of several varieties of rape (Brassica napus and B. Rapas) and of lesquerella (Lesquerella fendleri). The camera had a 1024 by 768 pixel resolution and twenty-four bit color resolution. Images of the rape were taken once per week and of the lesquerella two times each week during the flowering period. The first step in processing the images was to crop the image so that it showed only 1 m2. Since both of the species of interest have yellow flowers, all pixels with yellow color were identified. A shape filter was applied to the image to reject pod and stems that had turned brown and resulted in false positives. Spots of yellow color were then counted, and an overall index of yellow was calculated. Flower counts were made from the cropped images for verification on two dates. The results of the automated counts correlated well with the flower counts made by hand. With species tested where flowers are at the top of the canopy, this technique can be used successfully to provide flowering data over the season.