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Technology Advancements Protect Water Quality

Did you know a larger percentage of farmers use a smartphone and tablet than the average U.S. citizen? Ask a farmer how many apps he has on his phone. You might be surprised to find out he can view a map of his soil, track rainfall history and indentify weeds growing in his field.

Farmers closely monitor the health of their soils. Information from soil tests is entered into a spreadsheet and then is viewable in the form of a map – showing them exactly what the soil needs to be healthy and productive.

Andrew Lauver farms in Calhoun County and uses computer technology to analyze what the soil needs to be healthy.

That information is available in a farmer’s tractor. The information tells the farmer how much product the soil needs to be productive and only that amount is applied. It’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. The map shows that different parts within a field may need to be treated while other areas don’t need as much to be productive.

Fifth-generation Iowa farmer Andrew Lauver uses computers to help him plant his crop and manage the soil. “Computers help me save money and help me to protect the environment. I am willing to invest in new technology because it helps me make informed decisions and to improve the soil. That’s good for the water, too,” he said.

Advancements in computer technology allow farmers to grow more food while using fewer products. They are investing in technology to improve their soils and protect the water we share.

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