Jul 11, 2023
WSU Smart Vineyard field day to highlight irrigation

Precision irrigation sensors and technologies to mitigate heat stress are scheduled to be on display at the Washington State University’s Smart Vineyard field day.

At the field day, scheduled for July 21 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the WSU Roza Farm in Prosser, Washington, WSU scientists will showcase research to improve irrigation scheduling, grapevine plant models and heat stress mitigation.

The field day will share the why, what and how of irrigation scheduling and heat stress management for winegrapes. Discussions and demonstrations will focus on best management practices to balance vine growth and deficit irrigation with data from soil moisture sensors, understanding the uses and limitations of soil moisture sensors and how to integrate sensor technology with machinery operations and mobile networks.

Two technologies to help reduce the impact of heat stress on grapevines — a mist evaporative cooling system and a solid set canopy delivery system — will be demonstrated, including how to set up such systems and considerations for their use.

The research is conducted through AgAID, an agricultural artificial intelligence institute for transforming workforce and decision support, which is led by WSU. The institute’s mission is to build and foster partnerships between AI and agricultural communities and create a transdisciplinary ecosystem for technology innovation and knowledge transfer. It is funded by grants from the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Institute members include WSU, Oregon State University, University of California, Merced, Carnegie Mellon University, Heritage University, Wenatchee Valley College, Kansas State University, IBM Research and InnovateAg.

Washington State Wine Commission WSWCThe Washington State Wine Commission (WSWC) has provided supplemental funds to the institute to evaluate promising soil moisture sensors for application in Washington winegrape vineyards.

Registration and a $10 fee are required to attend the field day. Register at SmartVineyardFieldDay.eventbrite.com.

For additional information, contact Melissa Hansen, Research Program Director at mhansen@washingtonwine.org.

The research is funded by the AgAID Institute and the Washington wine industry.

The WSWC represents every licensed winery and wine grape grower in Washington state. Guided by an appointed board, WSWC provides a marketing platform to raise positive awareness about the Washington wine industry and generate greater demand for its wines. Funded almost entirely by the industry through assessments based on grape and wine sales, WSWC is a state government agency, established by the legislature in 1987.

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