Analysis of the need for soil moisture, salinity and temperature sensing in agriculture: a case study in Poland | Scientific Reports – Nature.com

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The survey end outcomes level out that For many farmers and horticulturists in Poland, i.e. for 96.7% of respondents, the information of soil properties, collectively with moisture, Is important, although presently solely 4.3% of them monitor soil moisture Of their farms (Desk 4). It follows from this knowledge that farmers are Aware of the influence of soil moisture on the situations and end outcomes of plant cultivation, however They’ve not any hazard to make an ongoing evaluation and evaluation. Such a state of affairs exists not solely in Poland, But in addition in completely different nations. Even revolutionary and properly-developed soil moisture monitoring methods on A worldwide scale have restricted software in particular person farms23,29. Farmers anticipate straightforward-to-use models that monitor soil moisture for The purpose Of making optimum selections when irrigating arable crops30. Comparable anticipateations of Polish farmers have been affirmed by the extreme proportion of respondents – 83.2%, who declared the willingness To look at such models Of their farms Earlier to buying for them.

Desk 4 Assessment of The want and current state of monitoring of soil properties, collectively with soil moisture.

Desk 5 Dielectric properties of the probes chosen for evaluation of soil properties.

Our evaluation of the out there enterprise options Available on the market level outs that the presently out there monitoring methods are imperfect and troublesome in direct use on a farm, e.g. soil moisture measurement Relies upon on its salinity and temperature, measuring probes require connections using a cable and have restricted wi-fi connection decisions out there and no battery power current. Only Definitely one of many options cited Is completely wi-fi (HYDRA 100 Scout). It makes use of, however, capacitive probes, whose measurements are affected by A scientific error ensuing from the affect of salinity and soil textual content materialure (Desk 5).

Regardless of an consciousness of The current technical limitations, The majority (88.4%) of respondents declared their willingness To buy and use A Quantity of probes To evaluate the moisture, salinity and temperature of the soil Of their farms. A situation was that the probe producers get rid of current design imperfections (Fig. 1). In complete, the pattern of surveyed farmers declared A requirement for 2905 probes, and most of them said They might construct a system for monitoring soil properties Of their farm Finally. The Most very important groupof the respondents, 31%, declared an curiosity To buy Simply one probe, however 18.7% said two probes and about 10% of respondents declared an curiosity To buy 10 or extra probes. This Quantity of models might make it potential To assemble a measurement community for monitoring soil properties in a farm. The obtained declarations of buy and use level outs the farmers’ want For simple, straightforward-to-use models for assessing soil moisture, salinity and temperature. Based mostly on The outcomes of research carried out by Jury and Vaux31 and Regan et al.32, such a extreme demand for soil moisture monitoring methods May even be a Results of the rising financial and ecological consciousness of agricultural producers. The consumption of water in agricultural manufacturing portions to roughly 75% of the out there worldwide freshwater assets, and It is developing. Subsequently, conserving water is An obligation of everyone, collectively with farmers Regardless of their type and measurement of manufacturing.

Figure 1

Quantity of respondents declaring willingness To buy and use a sure Quantity of probes.

Alalthough a statistically vital relationship was found between the floor space of the farm and the declared Quantity of models for buy and use, the correlation coefficient r = 0.223 was low (Fig. 2). Subsequently, The measurement of the farm was not An important premise that farmers adopted when declaring their willingness To buy gear for The continued evaluation of soil properties. Such end outcomes affirm, therefore, a extreme consciousness of farmers on the influence of soil moisture, salinity and temperature on manufacturing effectivity and the environment. That May even be level outd by a stronger relationship between the irrigated space Contained in the farm and the declared Quantity of probes To be used. There the correlation coefficient was r = 0.352 (Fig. 3). That is justified as a Outcome of irrigation is a extreme-value factor of cultivation know-how, and its effectiveness Is dependent upon the properties of the soil. Subsequently, the information of its moisture, But in addition temperature and salinity, permits one to optimize the time of irrigation, the dose of water and coexisting fertilizing. The spatial variability of soil additionally contrihoweveres to The want for right monitoring of soil properties in an irrigated area33.

Figure 2

Relationship between The measurement of the farm and the declared Quantity of buys and use of probes.

Figure 3

Relationship between irrigated space on the farm and the declared Quantity of buy and use of probes.

The traits of an agricultural holding, i.e. the assembleion of the cultivated crops and Using an irrigation system, Did not have A critical influence on farmers’ curiosity in Using gear for an ongoing evaluation of soil properties. This curiosity was extreme and various from 65.1 to 84.5%, Counting on the farm traits (Desk 6). Inside the group of farmers using irrigation methods, as many as 83% level outd the willingness to have A imply of 4.15 probes Of their farms. Also, in the group of farms not presently using irrigation, the curiosity in these models was extreme with 74% of farmers declaring A potential common use Of three.51 probes. In farms not cultivating cereals, and thus having completely different intensive crops, the curiosity in these models was The very biggest with A imply Of seven.5 probes per farm. The information in Desk 6 current that A comparatively extreme curiosity in models for monitoring soil moisture, salinity and temperature was demonstrated by farmers rising numerous teams of crops. However, the hugest Quantity of such declarations have been made by farmers rising greens – 84.5%. Farmers rising oilseed rape have been additionally extra Considering about using probes than People who Do not develop oilseed rape. It follows, therefore, that these most Considering about Using these models have been farmers rising crops producing probably huge income, however requiring beneficial soil situations the rightion of which Is potential by agricultural practices when the soil moisture, salinity and temperature are acknowledged.

Desk 6 Declaration of demand for models monitoring soil properties Counting on the traits of the farm.

The declarations of buy and use of models for the evaluation of soil properties have been areaally diversified (Desk 7). All surveyed farmers and horticulturists from the Mazoby way ofn voivodeship expressed A necessity to have such models Of their farms. It Ought to be famous that this is the area of Poland with the hugest focus of orchards and with many vegetable farms. Inside the West Pomeranian voivodeship, in flip, there are huge-scale agricultural farms, whose clients have a extreme consciousness of spatial and temporal diversification of soil properties and their influence on the effectiveness of agricultural practices34. These situations have been additionally emphasised by farmers in direct interviews.

Desk 7 Geographic and administrative variety of the willingness To make the most of models for monitoring soil properties.

Greater than 90% of farmers in the surveys declared that the information of soil moisture, temperature and salinity Is useful in figuring out the starting date of area works and sowing (Desk 8). WithOf their opinion, the affect of soil properties on completely different cultivation practices, Similar to fertilization, plant safety and irrigation, May even be extreme. Such reasoning is absolutely justified, as a Outcome of the soil properties decide its bearing performance and traction performance for tractors and agricultural equipment with out adversely affecting the soil assembleion35,36. Soil temperature and moisture, in flip, are The important factors of seed germination and plant progress37,38,39.

Desk 8 Assessment of the influence of soil properties on the optimization of agrotechnical procedures—farmers’ declarations.

Most farmers have acknowledged that An important options that characterize A great soil monitoring system are measurement accuracy and reliability. Also important are The power To evaluate soil properties at numerous depths, wi-fi knowledge transmission and estimation of the water dose all by way of irrigation based on the obtained soil moisture and temperature (Desk 9). Based mostly on farmers, The worth Of package May even be important although It is not An important.

Desk 9 Required options of models for soil properties monitoring in accordance to farmers’ anticipateations.

Farmers’ anticipateations relating to the efficiency options of the probes and The potential of using them in the optimization of agrotechnical cures have been most similar in the Kuyaby way ofn-Pomeranian (KP), Greater Poland (WP), and Pomeranian (PM) voivodships. These are areas of Poland with typical household farms conducting enterprise crop and livestock manufacturing with the inclusion of horticultural manufacturing. Farmers from the Lubusz (LU) and West Pomeranian (ZP) voivodships—areas of north-western Poland with huge-scale farms focused primarily on area crop manufacturing—had In all probability the most completely different anticipateations for the probes (Fig. 4).

Figure 4

Clusters of voivodeships with similar farmers’ anticipateations relating to The choices of probes for the evaluation of soil moisture and salinity. Voivodeship: KP-Kuyaby way ofn-Pomeranian, LE-Lublin, LU-Lubusz, LÓ-Łódź, PM-Pomeranian, WP-Greater Poland, ZP-West Pomeranian.

Based mostly on the anticipateations of farmers from their respective voivodeships of Poland, An important options are The potential of using the probes to optimize The tactic and dose of fertilization5 and The selection of the date of fertilization of crops7, Which Isn’t corassociated with the aforementioned attribute—It is the biggest contrihoweverion to The primary factor. Based mostly on the respondents, the operational options of the probes are additionally important, Similar to their reliability, ease of use, change of end outcomes to a smartphone/pc, and using The outcomes for irrigation of crops12,13,14,15,16—It is the second primary factor (Fig. 5).

Figure 5

Main factors of farmers’ anticipateations in voivodeships with regard to The potential of using probes to optimize agrotechnical cures: 1-date of commencement of area works, 2-sowing date, 3-sowing depth, 4-Method of soil cultivation, 5-technique and dose of fertilization, 6-software of plant safety merchandise, 7-dates of fertilization. With regard to efficiency traits of the probes: 8-worth, 9-measurement accuracy, 10-measurement differ 0–15 cm, 11-measurement differ 0–30 cm, 12-reliability and resistance To wreck, 13-straightforward set up and operation, 14-sending end outcomes to a smartphone/pc, 15-Particulars Regarding the dose of water for irrigation, 16-measurement knowledge used to automate irrigation.

Farmers’ anticipateations relating to the usefulity of the probes have been associated to The measurement of their farms (Fig. 6). The anticipateations of the farmers of the smallest farms (As a lot as 20 ha) And huge farms (of 800–1000 ha) have been In all probability the most divergent. The requirements Of Householders of farms with a smaller space, As a lot as 400 ha, differed from the requirements of farmers working manufacturing on farms with An monumental space.

Figure 6

Clusters of farms Of numerous spaces (ha) with similar anticipateations of farmers When it Includes The choices of the soil moisture and salinity probes.

Farmers anticipated, above all, that the probes would facilitate Using plant safety merchandise6 and that They might be reliable, straightforward To make the most of, and reported end outcomes on-line12,13,14—these are The primary primary factor (Fig. 7). Probes Also Should optimize The selection of the date of commencing area works1 and fertilization of crops5,7 with The power to measure soil moisture and salinity each in the 0–15 cm and 0–30 cm layer9,10—these are the second primary factor.

Figure 7

Main factors of anticipateations Of Householders of farms with completely different spaces with regard to The potential of using probes to optimize agrotechnical cures: 1-date of commencement of area works, 2-date of sowing, 3-sowing depth, 4-Method of soil cultivation, 5-technique and fertilization dose, 6-software of plant safety merchandise, 7-dates of fertilization. With regard to useful options of the probes: 8-worth, 9-measurement accuracy, 10-measurement differ 0–15 cm, 11-measurement differ 0–30 cm, 12-reliability and resistance To wreck, 13-straightforward set up and operation, 14-sending end outcomes to a smartphone/pc, 15-information on the dose of water for irrigation, 16-measurement knowledge used to automate irrigation.

The dendrogram (Fig. 8) reveals that farmers’ anticipateations as to the efficiency of the probes Trusted the crops they have been rising. The first group have been farmers rising agricultural crops Similar to cereals, beetroot, rape and completely differents, and the second group have been potato developers. Horticulturists rising greens and fruit timber are separate teams.

Figure 8

Clusters of teams of crops cultivated by farmers with similar anticipateations relating to The choices of soil moisture and salinity probes.

Farmers cultivating numerous teams of crops declared that probes monitoring soil moisture and salinity should Assist in choosing the optimum date of area works1, collectively with the date of sowing2, The tactic of soil cultivation4 and The tactic and dose of fertilization5—these are The primary primary factor. As properly as, the probes should optimize the fertilization date7 and plant irrigation15,16 on The idea Of information despatched to a smartphone/pc14—these are the second factor (Fig. 9).

Figure 9

Main factors of the anticipateations of farmers cultivating numerous teams of crops with regard to The potential of using probes to optimize agrotechnical cures: 1-date of commencement of area works, 2-sowing date, 3-sowing depth, 4-soil cultivation, 5-technique and fertilization dose, 6-software of plant safety merchandise, 7-dates of fertilization. With regard to useful options of the probes: 8-worth, 9-measurement accuracy, 10-measurement differ 0–15 cm, 11-measurement differ 0–30 cm, 12-reliability and resistance To wreck, 13-straightforward set up and operation, 14-sending end outcomes to a smartphone/pc, 15-Particulars Regarding the dose of water for irrigation, 16-measurement knowledge used to automate irrigation.

Direct interviews carried out with a recurrentative pattern of farmers affirmed The outcomes of the survey. Regardless of the manufacturing sector (agriculture, horticulture), farm measurement or area, farmers emphasised The want for ongoing monitoring of soil properties, primarily moisture, temperature and salinity. This knowledge would permit them to optimumly use the pure fertility of the soil, enhance the effectivity of Using Method of manufacturing and make agricultural manufacturing extra environmentally nice. WithOf their opinion the monitoring of rainfall and air temperature is Not enough. Agricultural producers in Poland think about That these days soil properties Ought to be assessed not solely on the farm scale, But in addition in areas and even in fragments of a area. Creating monitoring methods would permit for rational and exact software of water, mineral fertilizers or plant safety merchandise. It May additionally be simpler to make selections on scheduling work in areas and in orchards. The interviewees leveled to such options already functioning in Poland, however Tailored to drought monitoring all by way of The complete nation40. Widespread monitoring of soil properties in the farm, particularly of monitoring methods, requires a technical enhancement in the models for assessing soil moisture, salinity and temperature. Jones et al.41 level out A disbenefit Which will Clarify why such a small proportion of farmers use soil moisture probes: the rising Quantity Of lalook at sensors throughout the globe is Making a market Full of confusing decisions for consumers and reducing market share for producers. Without informationrmed shopper decisions a product worth level Could Even be managed extra by promoting benefit than by product efficiency and extreme quality. Technical factors related to the operation and servicing of such gear are In all probability the most frequent causes for discontinuation of their use by respondents. Inside the farmers’ opinion, these models Need to be straightforward To make the most of and reliable. However, as in drought monitoring42, They Need to include superior pc softwares for optimizing and verbalizing cultivation ideas.

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