Growficient’s sensors measure various values of the plants. This provides valuable data. Thanks to the development of algorithms, this data becomes increasingly valuable. The new Plant Activity functionality tells you when plants start actively uptaking water in the morning. In this article, you can read more about this new feature.
When a plant evaporates and is active, it absorbs water. This happens based on the amount of light, humidity, temperature, and air movement, among other factors. There is normally no light at night, and the plant’s stomata are closed. As a result, evaporation is close to zero and the plant absorbs virtually no water. The graph below shows this reflected in the slow drop in moisture percentage at night.
As soon as the light intensity increases in the morning (or thanks to artificial lights, for example), the plant becomes more active, and water uptake increases. This can be seen in a so-called “morning dip,” in which the moisture percentage suddenly decreases more sharply and rapidly in the morning.
Plant Activity = start evaporation
Our new Plant Activity feature detects changes in water uptake and thus can rule out whether a plant is active and taking up water or not. You can recognize this plant activity in the graph by the circle. From this moment the dry back goes faster. So you can immediately see from what time a plant evaporates water.
Why is this important information? Most of a plant’s water uptake occurs during evaporation. If you start irrigation while the plant is not yet evaporating, then you can, more or less, “blow up” the plant. If you start irrigation too late, however, the substrate or soil will deteriorate too much. Both can cause problems for the fruits, the root system, and the plant itself.
Steering the plant
To avoid problems and optimize the cultivation result, it is better not to irrigate before the point of plant activity. This comes in useful on rainy or dark days, for example. Thanks to the data, you can quickly see what time your plant is not active. This allows you to delay the first irrigation, thus avoiding stress or excessive root pressure.
Plant Activity also gives you the opportunity to steer a plant further. For example, you can choose to start irrigation immediately after activity (and thus have a vegetative push) or wait a longer time after (generative push). This allows you to use your irrigation strategy to make your crop stronger or faster, in order to optimize your harvest potential.
The Plant Activity functionality is currently available to all our users. The functionality is still being developed further, so we would love to hear your feedback!
Note: The model makes calculations based on changes in the data. In some cases (for example due to poor coverage) buffered data is not calculated immediately. This affects the calculated start time.
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