With the current focus on reducing chemicals and protecting pollinators, crop spraying has developed a bad reputation in many circles. It is important to understand the purpose and benefit of crop spraying as well as recognize the challenges that you might face along the way. Crop spraying has had a significant impact on ensuring sufficient crop yields for food security, so the more that you understand about its role, the easier it is to embrace it and use it to your farm's advantage.
Recognizing common challenges in crop spraying
Spraying crops is not as easy as you might think, especially when you consider the effects of resistance issues, environmental changes, and even government intervention. Identifying the common challenges is the first step toward mitigation.
For example, one of the biggest problems threatening crop yields is a growing resistance to many pesticides. Pests are developing immunities, which means that your crops are at greater risk again. You'll want to consider your treatment options carefully and even opt for combination treatments sometimes to combat problems.
Spray drift is another serious concern. In fact, if your crop spraying process occurs on a day with enough wind for overspray and spray drift onto neighboring properties, you can face fines and penalties for that exposure on other properties. Monitor wind speeds and directions and choose spray equipment that minimizes overspray and drift.
The environmental effects of many pesticides are starting to gain attention not only from the regulatory authorities but also society as a whole. The focus on protecting pollinators and reducing environmental damage means that agricultural spraying needs to be done with those concerns in mind.
Embracing technology for sustainable, precision spraying
When you want to reduce your pest infestation and crop loss issues and still minimize the collateral damage, consider embracing technology in your operation. For example, integrated pest control systems provide you with opportunities to target your treatments more precisely and embrace sustainable products for many of your applications.
With GPS-guided applications and equipment with variable rate applications and drone control, you can treat your entire property with the precision and accuracy you need and the efficiency your operation depends on. This can save time, money, and complications.
Automation with technology reduces the risk of human error by taking human judgment and fallibility out of the equation. Your equipment will assess wind speeds, drift risks, and treatment efficacy to help you with safe and adequate applications.
These are some of the most important things to consider as you prioritize safe and effective spraying for your crops.