Now, with the added advantage of satellite technology, machine learning, artificial intelligence and cloud-based geospatial technology it has been possible to create a new way to value Australian agriculture. This new service from Digital Agriculture Services is set to revolutionise how decisions and investments are made in agriculture. https://digitalagricultureservices.com/
The Royal Botanical Gardens apparently have a very tight budget. They open at 7am, which is way too late for most of the city dwellers who would like to walk or run through the fabulous parklands as part of their daily exercise.
Over many years we have been told that the Gardens cannot afford to hire rangers who safe guard the precious plants. Apparently, plants do get stolen!!! (My sub-idea is please stop stealing plants from the Botanic Gardens!)
Instead of hiring expensive human labour, the Gardens should consider buying drones to monitor visitors. The drones would be equipped with heat sensor cameras to follow visitors, especially around areas where plants are most likely to be stolen.
The drones would also have small pumps with the ability to microinject a smelly and bright colored substance on the offenders. The substance would be non-toxic, but the smell and colour would hang around for a couple of days to make the life of the thief especially uncomfortable.
Three ideas from IdeaSpies were presented by Diana Oh at the Ashurst April 2018 Boardroom Lunch. The idea receiving the most votes from directors was vertical farming. This idea now goes to the final at the December Boardroom Lunch to select the top idea for the year. www.ideaspies.com/post/vertical-farming/.
FluroSat is a data analytics platform for farmers which combines drone and satellite imagery with algorithms to assess plant health, diagnose problems and direct fertiliser application. The easiest way to imagine it is as an X-ray for plants. When taking an X-ray you can separate tissues from bones. When you take a camera that has very high spectral resolution, you can see every wavelength of light being separated into different layers of information, just like bones and muscles.The system highlights the hot spots which are inconsistent with the rest of the field. Farmers use this map to identify where crops need more fertiliser. www.Flurosat.com
Scientists at Chongqing Jiaotong University in China have created a paste that's made from the same substance found in plant cell walls. It's made from a sodium carboxymethyl cellulose solution which creates support and protection for plants to grow. When the paste is combined with sand in an arid environment, it's still able to keep water and nutrients for growth. A project in a northern China desert saw positive results in just six months. Flowers and vegetables were growing in nearly 500 acres of sand with the new technology, which essentially makes the land fertile in an extremely hot climate. http://www.distractify.com/news/2017/09/25/Z1OEAxp/china-researchers-deserts-fertile-land
BioCarbon says its two drones can plant 100,000 trees in a single day. It has started in Myanmar (previously called Burma) following successful trials in England and Australia, The drones work in three stages. Firstly the drones will map an area, analysing surface topology and composition, soil type and moisture, as well as possible physical obstructions. These analyses help decide which seeds should be planted. Secondly, the drones fly low, around 3-6 feet above the ground, planting new seeds every six seconds. The drones aren't however just letting the seeds drift in the breeze. Each drone uses a pressurised can to shoot a biodegradable seed pod into the ground. Thirdly, after the mapping and planting, the drones monitor the area regularly. That data gets fed into the company's machine learning algorithms, strengthening the mapping part of the plan. The process is ideal for reforesting after fires and planting trees in difficult to reach areas.