Submitted to: International Conference on Precision Agriculture Abstracts & Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/19/1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Long-term research in the SE Coastal Plain shows that soil variability is widespread. Areas of low-yielding soils within fields often significantly reduce yield below that expected for the typical soils within the field. Farmers, though qualitatively aware of both variability and its effect on yield, appear to perceive that purported economic and environmental benefits of variable-rate technology do not justify the initial cost. They need data on economic effects of field-scale variability to allow rational strategic decisions. A multi-agency project was funded to both document existing variability in on-farm yields and to communicate the significance of the problem. Yield monitors were installed on three combines in Duplin and Sampson Counties, NC. These monitors collected data during 1997, totaling 900 ha of wheat and 120 ha of rye, followed by approximately 1500 ha of corn and similar area of soybean. Preliminary data were processed in vendor's yield mapping software. For further analyses and presentation, they were aggregated into ARC/Info GIS. Dramatic variability was documented both within and among fields, operators, and soil types.