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Farmers look to apps to help with timing of crop treatment

Wisconsin corn, soybean crops down, potato crop up in 2017
Posted at 11:04 AM, Sep 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-02 12:04:06-04

BLACK RIVER FALLS, Wis. (AP) -- Rains that inundated Wisconsin this spring after a wet fall and winter forced farmers to plant their crops historically late and that has led to uneven growth stages.

Plant pathologist Damon Smith from the University of Wisconsin-Madison says that has made it difficult for farmers to decide when to apply fungicide to crops because it's based on specific plant growth stages. But an app is helping farmers make better decisions about when to do so, Wisconsin Public Radio reported.

Smith said farmers are looking for closely-tailored recommendations about what to do. So Smith says one of his programs have developed smartphone apps to help. One called Sporecaster, lets farmers input data like location and plant growth to help predict the best time to treat for white mold in soybeans.