GRACo Travel Systems, Inc., based in the United States, and Graco Travel Solutions, Inc. in California have teamed up to launch the first commercially available system that uses remote monitoring of plants for the purpose of capturing data on soil pH, nutrient levels and other characteristics of the plant.
The system uses a proprietary software program called ‘gRACO’ that has been developed by GRACOs researchers and a Graco team.
GRACO CEO Mark Smith says the system is designed to collect information about the condition of a plant at the moment it is harvested and then use the collected information to determine how it should be grown in a specific environment.
“The system will enable us to identify where soil pH and nutrient levels are deficient, and when to start fertilising and watering,” Smith says.
“For example, if you have a low pH soil, and you want to get nutrients in, you will need to start watering the soil, which can take up to a few weeks.”
Smith says that the system can also be used to identify plant diseases and other conditions, such as root rot.
“The GRACOS system also allows you to determine if the plant is an indicator for a plant disease, such a root rot, which is a major concern in our agriculture sector.
There are some problems that can occur if you are growing an invasive plant, like the potato blight, in an environment that has a low nutrient level,” Smith adds.
The system can be configured to track different aspects of a growing plant’s life cycle such as its growth rate, leaf spot count, and more.
According to Graco, the system will cost $100 per unit and is scheduled to launch later this year.
Read more about Graco travel systems here.
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