Spatial variability of Chilean vineyards, in terms of yield and quality, is high, which fully justifies site-specific management, particularly differential harvest. In this study, the most common zoning tools (NDVI and ECa measurements) were evaluated and compared. Comparisons also included a calibrated GVI. Two contrasting large field experiments (pruning, irrigation, and N fertilization treatments) were established in vineyards to (1) evaluate two vegetation indices: (i) a non-calibrated airplane-based NDVI and (ii) calibrated satellite-based GVI and to (2) evaluate the ECa measurements. The GVI was also assessed at the commercial level, in different vineyards and valleys. The GVI was more sensitive in discriminating grape yields and quality while the NDVI failed to adequately sense vigor patterns and fruit quality in the more homogeneous site. Thus, a calibrated GVI can be recommended as a better tool than NDVI for defining management zones as well as making spatial and temporal comparisons among fields and seasons. In general, ECa explained few differences in the alluvial soil properties and did not predict differences in plant vigor as measured by either vegetation indices, therefore ECa by itself was not a good estimator of the most commonly measured soil properties for establishing management zones in these fields with low variability in terms of EC and other soil characteristics.
Precision Agriculture – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 19, 2016
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