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Selective spray technology saves on pesticide costsSelective spray technology saves on pesticide costs

Crop Connection: University of Nebraska research puts Greeneye’s spraying system to test.

Curt Arens

October 5, 2022

2 Min Read
Greeneye technology high clearance sprayer
SAVING SPRAY: According to UNL data, Greeneye selective spray technology can save on herbicide use and cost for farmers, hitting only the weeds in the field. Curt Arens

Precision spraying technology has been on the horizon for some time. Farmers have been anxious for the technology because it can save on pesticide costs and is more environmentally friendly.

One new system launched this past growing season from Greeneye Technology, based in Tel Aviv, Israel, has achieved a breakthrough from a combination of hardware and proprietary intelligence that can differentiate between crops and weeds in real time.

This makes Greeneye the first company to commercially launch a precision spraying system in the U.S. that is suited for both pre- and postemergence spraying.

The new technology, known as Greeneye’s selective spray system, turns every sprayer into a smart machine with seamless integration, allowing the machine to detect weeds and spray them precisely through individually controlled nozzles in real time as the machine travels up to 15 mph, day or night, through the field.

UNL trials

University of Nebraska-Lincoln researchers put this new technology to the test this past season, and the results are eye-opening. Comparing the Greeneye proprietary AI precision spraying system against broadcast application of herbicides, the UNL results found a 94% reduction in burndown herbicide use during preemergence spraying compared to broadcast application, with a cost saving of $24.70 per acre.

During postemergence spraying of a nonresidual herbicide, there was an 87% reduction compared to broadcast application, with a cost savings of $40.50 per acre. The levels of efficacy compared to broadcast application were the same or similar. Weed control on broadleaf weeds was the same, and on grasses, was slightly less but similar to broadcast methods.

Overall, the residual and nonresidual herbicide cost for Greeneye application in the UNL trials was $40.60 per acre, compared to $105.80 per acre on the broadcast treatment, resulting in a total savings of $65.20 per acre.  

“We are delighted to announce the results of the UNL field trial, which provide the strongest proof yet of how our precision spraying technology is helping to transform not only farmers’ profitability, but also their productivity,” Nadav Bocher, CEO of Greeneye, said in a Aug. 17 news release.

“Precision spraying has long been a desired concept for farmers. However, while achieving a significant reduction in herbicide use is hugely compelling, cutting costs and reducing volume use of chemicals is not enough to drive mainstream adoption. Weed control efficacy must also be on par with broadcast treatments.”

“For our first commercial season, we worked with a number of farmers in the Henderson and York, Neb., areas, using our own self-propelled sprayers to provide custom spraying,” said David Greer, Greeneye sales representative based in Sioux Falls, S.D. “To date, our focus has been on corn and soybean states like Nebraska, Iowa and Illinois in 2022. However, we will be launching in other agriculture states in 2023.”

Learn more at greeneye.ag.

About the Author(s)

Curt Arens

Editor, Nebraska Farmer

Curt Arens began writing about Nebraska’s farm families when he was in high school. Before joining Farm Progress as a field editor in April 2010, he had worked as a freelance farm writer for 27 years, first for newspapers and then for farm magazines, including Nebraska Farmer.

His real full-time career, however, during that same period was farming his family’s fourth generation land in northeast Nebraska. He also operated his Christmas tree farm and grew black oil sunflowers for wild birdseed. Curt continues to raise corn, soybeans and alfalfa and runs a cow-calf herd.

Curt and his wife Donna have four children, Lauren, Taylor, Zachary and Benjamin. They are active in their church and St. Rose School in Crofton, where Donna teaches and their children attend classes.

Previously, the 1986 University of Nebraska animal science graduate wrote a weekly rural life column, developed a farm radio program and wrote books about farm direct marketing and farmers markets. He received media honors from the Nebraska Forest Service, Center for Rural Affairs and Northeast Nebraska Experimental Farm Association.

He wrote about the spiritual side of farming in his 2008 book, “Down to Earth: Celebrating a Blessed Life on the Land,” garnering a Catholic Press Association award.

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