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Corn+Soybean Digest

Don’t base precision ag decisions on old maps, poor soil testing

EC soil mapping is one way to improve your data accuracy Crystal Valley Coop Lake Crystal Minn operates two Veris EC MSP3 carts One coulter pair injects a constant voltage into the soil and another coulter electrode measures the voltage drop mapping various rootzone soil textures
<p>EC soil mapping is one way to improve your data accuracy. Crystal Valley Co-op, Lake Crystal, Minn., operates two <a href="http://www.veristech.com/products/msp3.aspx" target="_blank">Veris EC MSP3</a> carts. One coulter pair injects a constant voltage into the soil, and another coulter electrode measures the voltage drop, mapping various root-zone soil textures. </p>
Think different:&nbsp;Avoid the data dump The old saying, &ldquo;Garbage in, garbage out,&rdquo; describes how computer-generated analysis is limited by the data it is based on. Precision ag has been used for 18 years, but there is still room to improve the accuracy of your soil samples and maps. Sloppiness leads to applying the wrong amount (of inputs) on one part of the field. &ldquo;If you don&rsquo;t have accurate data, you&rsquo;re wasting your time,&rdquo; says Chuck Campbell, Pro-Ag Consulting, Windsor, Ill. The company provides independent consulting services across 800,000 acres in Illinois, Indiana and Missouri.

Imagine if your yield data was based on just one corn ear from each field. That’s the equivalent of basing your precision-ag operations on lax soil testing and old-technology soil maps. Soil sampling, fertilizer placement, variable-rate fertilizer and seeding, herbicide application and auto section control would all rely on inaccurate information. Soil scientists are concerned that colorful maps might divert attention from

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