Webinar: smart sensors for floriculture, September 27, 11:00-12:00 EST

"What if a smartphone app could show you your nitrogen level?"

Ever thought your plants were looking a little chlorotic but didn’t want to waste time or money on tests? What if a smartphone app could tell you their nitrogen level? What if low-cost sensors could help you monitor plant growth and tell you when PGRs are needed?

Having previously covered topics such as artificial intelligence and smart spraying, OMAFRA continues its CEA Webinar series, looking specifically at smart sensors. And they don’t have to be anything fancy to help you monitor your crop.

Although “floriculture” is in the title, the sensors and apps Dr. Krishna Nemali from Purdue University will discuss have applications across all avenues of controlled environment agriculture. Keep reading for details on the webinar and how to register.

The topic
Because of the intensive nature of farming, operational costs are high in the floriculture industry. Increasing crop productivity and reducing resource wastage are essential for profits in floriculture production.

Continuous monitoring of plants for growth and quality-related issues is extremely important for maximizing crop productivity and optimizing resource use. However, this requires a trained workforce who are knowledgeable about plant growth and quality-related issues. Unfortunately, the availability of a trained workforce is limited in the floriculture industry, especially during the pandemic. 

Our lab is developing plant-monitoring techniques using affordable and easy-to-use devices, such as smartphones and low-cost remote sensors. These ‘smart sensors’ capture and process plant images to generate economically useful information, including seedling counts, plant growth rate, height and width, nitrogen status, and color development (and potentially many other traits). In addition to aiding in plant monitoring, these devices can train the workforce with plant growth and quality-related issues. In this presentation, I will describe technology development, conduct a virtual demonstration, and share our plans on making this technology available to floriculture growers globally.

The speaker
Dr. Krishna Nemali joined the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University in July 2016 as an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist. His doctoral research focused on the development of plant-based automated irrigation techniques using sensors and studies related to the physiological responses of floriculture crops to varying levels of light, water, and nitrogen during production. 

Register via this link.

Want more info, or having trouble registering? Email Dr. Sarah Jandricic at sarah.jandricic@ontario.ca

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