Build Better Forecasts and Make Better Decisions with Tassel Count

For generations, the most reliable tool for predicting corn yield has been a solid pair of work boots, worn by growers as they walk their fields taking spot samples of tassel count. While nothing can replace a good pair of boots, new technology from Sentera can improve the way the work gets done.

With FieldAgent’s tassel count analytics from Sentera, yield estimates are much more accurate and reliable than manual sampling, delivering tassel count density throughout an entire field so users can more easily forecast and refine their crop yields prior to harvest and make other critical management decisions.

How it Works

FieldAgent’s tassel count analytics tool counts the plants that have developed a tassel and have the potential of producing full ears. The user also receives an accurate zone map through the analytics – showing the average number of standing plants depicted with a red, yellow or green indicator, directing the user where to go out and conduct ear samples, streamlining time and processes for the grower and their agronomist.

In order to estimate yield, agricultural professionals traditionally take tassel and kernel counts at a handful of random locations in the field. Sentera’s tassel zone maps improve this estimate by directing agricultural professionals to take these counts at targeted locations representative of the variation present in the field. For example, the user may take three samples in a “good” zone, three samples in a “medium” zone, and three samples in a “bad” zone to get the most comprehensive estimate of potential yield.

Mapping Out Success

Tassel count zone maps are another layer the agricultural professional can consider and leverage alongside as-planted data, FieldAgent stand count layers, Nitrogen application data, soil type, and Sentera NDVI-based crop health maps when evaluating crop performance across a field for in-season decision making and long-term planning.

Once the field is harvested and the yield data is added into the mix of information, a grower can truly understand how an area in their field performed, how many plants emerged based on the seeds which were planted and how their plants fared as far as health, maturity and ultimately, how many bushels those plants produced.

Having this comprehensive and accurate view of the tassel count can help agricultural professionals make more informed economic decisions.

Use Case: Knowing When to Apply Fungicide

Coupled with FieldAgent stand count layers, a grower with insight into tassel count data can know exactly when they should apply fungicide to best protect their yield. 

We know that the most important time to have fungicide applied is between VT and R1 to provide the optimal protection from diseases such as Gray Leaf Spot or Northern Corn Leaf Blight. The key is to know when most of the field has reached VT to make spraying the most effective. 

A grower who is flying for both FieldAgent tassel and stand count will identify when 50% of their field has reached VT, signifying the right time to spray fungicide and prevent the most yield loss. This allows the grower to know that they are spraying at the optimal time and removes the guesswork from the question of when to apply. 

Click here for more information about FieldAgent’s Tassel Count Analytics Tool.

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