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Teachers Exploring Technology in Agriculture

Due to the advance of technology, precision agriculture has given farmers new tools in their toolboxes to advance crop health and increase yield. Participants in the Exploring Tech in Ag workshop in Columbus, Ohio, learned about the way technology informs farming decisions and helps farmers produce more abundant crops. The Ohio State University (OSU) and a NIFA grant sponsored the event.

Teachers from around the state and from Pennsylvania gathered at OSU’s Waterman Agriculture and Natural Resources Laboratory Complex in Columbus. The two-day workshop included field work, demonstrations, and data analysis.

Next, it was out to the field to collect soil samples and measure nutrient content. Activities included testing with the Lamotte soil testing kit and a soil charge demonstration. Using the GreenSeeker handheld device to measure canopy color and cover is a way to predict the nitrogen requirement of corn crops. The remote sensing device determines how much red light is reflected—healthy plants absorb more red light and may need less nitrogen application. This lesson introduces students to the technologies involved in precision agriculture and the connection between light and crop health.

NIFA supports this project with the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative. Learn more about the technology used at Grow Next Gen.

Want to read about more impacts like this? Check out Fresh from the Field, a weekly bulletin showcasing transformative impacts made by grantees funded by NIFA.

Farm Bill Priority Areas
Plant health, production, and products
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