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Potatoes and soil moisture: when should I start irrigating?

November 2018

During this hot summer, every grower was wondering how his potato crop would deal with the drought. In order to keep the crop growing, there is no doubt this season that irrigation is necessary. Which plot is the most urgent and how long can a grower wait until the next bout of irrigation is needed without losing too much production? According to Professor Wim Bastiaansen of Aurea Imaging BV and TU Delft, there is a practical need for a simple soil moisture monitor. In this article, the scientist describes a number of methods with their advantages and disadvantages. His main conclusion is that none of the methods is accurate enough in itself to determine the exact moment of irrigation, but that a combination offers more possibilities.

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