How Weather Monitoring Systems Can Help Farmers
If you live on land, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have a weather station. The weather and its variations play a direct role in the success (or failure) of a farm. Take hay fishing as an example: having a weather monitoring system will help you determine if the conditions are right to do so. Or, maybe you grow temperature-sensitive crops. Picking the right time to seed can mean the difference between failure and success.
The most common reason farms fail is crop failure due to weather-related events. While an agricultural weather station won’t eliminate this threat, it can at least help you better deal with it. Knowing is half the battle, so why be ignorant of something so important to your livelihood?
The reason for the establishment of the weather monitoring system
There is another good reason to have a weather monitoring system on your farm. You may be far away from the nearest official weather station, which is often located far away in urban areas. The weather is fickle and can change within a few miles, so it would be foolish to base a decision on weather data from a city weather station. A weather station will help you manage your crops more efficiently by, for example, providing you with data to make better irrigation decisions, protecting crops from freeze damage, and helping you watch wind conditions before you spray.
Farms of any size can benefit from weather data. For small farms, one station may be sufficient. However, larger farms may want to consider several. Given that it is necessary today to have farms of 1,000 acres or more to generate enough income to keep them running efficiently, you will want to have weather data from multiple locations on your property.
And for good reason too. It is entirely possible that weather conditions such as temperature and humidity can change over very small distances, and can be important in deciding whether to spray pesticides, lay manure, and perform other weather-dependent farm maintenance.
Which weather station features are most valuable to the farm?
Look for a site with a typical weather instrument suite: of these, temperature, humidity, and rainfall are the most useful. Depending on your farm’s setup, a site with more features may be worthwhile. Soil moisture sensors help ensure fields are well watered; leaf moisture sensors keep you informed about the health of your fruit trees, and UV and solar radiation sensors tell you if your crops are receiving enough light.
How should I use weather station data?
A personal weather station can keep you updated on the weather, but the best way to use this data is to look for patterns over time. Take crop farming as an example. If they are susceptible to frost, you certainly don’t want to grow crops while the risk of frost and freeze is still high. By using weather station data archived over time, you will be able to better decide when to plant and irrigate these crops.
Invest in a site with good software that will allow you to efficiently analyze weather data: many mid to high-end sites offer such functionality. It might also be a good idea to research your local climate so you can make more informed decisions based on the data you see.
The importance of prediction
Yes, we have highlighted the need for farmers to have a weather station, but it would be irresponsible to mention the importance of mastering weather forecasts. A personal weather station won’t warn you of crop-damaging hail or severe frost. Meteorologists are trained to predict these events, giving you days to prepare instead of minutes or hours.
Your Weather Monitoring Systems can still be useful here, for example, on cold nights when severe cold is forecast, you can use the weather station to monitor actual temperatures and adjust your mitigations to minimize damage.
Weather affects your business
As a farmer, the weather plays a huge role in your livelihood. One miscalculation could mean a bad crop. Today, administrative costs are so high that there is little room for error. For this reason, we strongly recommend that all farmers invest in a personal Weather Monitoring Systems
Although it does not prevent severe weather events. But at least hyper-local weather data can be used to get a better idea of what might be affected and what to do about it. This can require an investment of hundreds (and in some cases not even thousands) of dollars. But we think it’s a wise investment.