Ceres Imaging, a precision farming analytics provider, and Probe Schedule, the irrigation management software unit of Wilbur-Ellis, recently expanded their partnership—and it’s yielding significant benefits for growers who use both services.
The partners have created a seamless integration that allows growers to see Ceres Imaging’s aerial imagery and Probe Schedule data side by side. This integration builds on the strong partnership between Ceres Imaging and Wilbur-Ellis and makes it easier for growers to identify and address issues that threaten yield, as well as save time from switching back and forth between apps.
In recent years, precision agriculture has seen a dramatic adoption uptake by growers in the western United States. Water shortages are common, the price of fertilizer is increasing steeply, and extreme weather events threaten grower livelihoods. Smart irrigation is an important area of precision agriculture that is becoming critical for growers today as they look for ways to protect their yields and reduce their costs.
Growers are increasingly relying on data from imagery and in field sensors to determine the optimal irrigation strategy based on their goals. Water scarcity and conservation are of the utmost importance to growers. In some regions of the west, including parts of California, growers are not allocated enough water to meet all their crops needs, and are forced to make difficult decisions as to which crops to underwater or not irrigate at all.
The decision to form a strategic partnership was a logical move for Ceres Imaging and Wilbur-Ellis.
Ceres Imaging and Wilbur-Ellis partnered in 2018, recognizing the opportunities collaboration would bring to their customers. Ceres Imaging often found actionable areas of interest in a customer’s fields, and the Wilbur-Ellis representatives were there to provide solutions and services to address the issues that were found.
One particular mutual success story for Ceres Imaging and Wilbur-Ellis involved McManis Family Winery, which used insights from Ceres Imaging in combination with the Wilbur-Ellis AgVerdict precision agriculture toolkit to reduce soil amendment applications by 30% while also growing a more consistent vine.
After organic collaborations like this occurred several times, the Wilbur-Ellis leadership approached Ceres Imaging and suggested the companies discuss the formation of a formal partnership. The result was a partnership that empowered Wilbur-Ellis representatives to offer Ceres Imaging as part of their agronomic package to growers and then subsequently use that data in making recommendations for Wilbur-Ellis customers.
A deeper integration
Before making the decision to integrate the Ceres Imaging and Probe Schedule apps, Ceres Imaging and Wilbur-Ellis did a pilot test involving the two technologies. The pilot ran successfully for one year and demonstrated the benefits to growers of integrating the two, and since then, the two companies have been working together across the western United States.
Integrating Ceres Imaging and Wilbur-Ellis’s irrigation management software helps busy growers be even more efficient by enabling them to identify issues and make decisions quickly—without having to jump between apps. For example, if the Probe Schedule software says a certain area is receiving too much water, the grower can validate the water stress status on a per plant basis using insights from Ceres Imaging. Likewise, seeing probe data in the context of the variability of a field gives growers important context to make better irrigation decisions.
A bright future
The integration between Wilbur-Ellis’s Probe Schedule and Ceres Imaging is one step in a journey of helping growers protect yield, conserve water, and increase farm profits. To learn more, talk to your Ceres Imaging or Wilbur-Ellis representative.