Home Agriculture Satellite imagery detects early farm crop development

Satellite imagery detects early farm crop development

US: Farm Futures partnered with the Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory (EASAL) at Kansas State University to develop vegetative health index maps. Each map is composed from satellite data taken over a two-week period. The EASAL maps show current vegetative health for the past two weeks and compare vegetative health with the previous two-week period, with the previous year and with the long-term average.

Satellite imagery revealed active vegetative growth on the West Coast and in many areas of the eastern half of the Lower 48 states. The corn crop is far enough along now to begin filling in prime growing areas of the Midwest now as well, covering soils that previously showed up on the imagery in these areas.

Vegetative activity is well ahead of the previous year’s levels in eastern Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and southwestern Ohio. Much of this is simply due to the quicker planting and establishment of the crops this year. However, it is also easy to see from the satellite imagery that vegetative activity is well-below the previous year’s levels in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri and Arkansas due to the advanced maturity of the wheat crop and heat and dryness in the region. Spring crops are planted earlier and on more acres in the Northern Plains, show up as greater vegetative activity, but the advanced maturity of the spring wheat crop is also beginning to show up on satellite pictures.

Source: Farm Futures