Leveraging Big Data Through Digitization: A Fruit Orchard Use Case 

Nitzan Atar
April 10, 2022

Farmers of previous generations relied on trial and error, gut instinct, and the scientific knowledge of their era to cultivate crops. Today, we have a significant advantage over our predecessors: cutting-edge software and user-friendly apps that collect big data to provide accurate, detailed, and extensive information on crop health. 

What Is Big Data And How Can You Use It?

Big data refers to data sets that are constantly updated and are big, varied, and reliable enough to have statistical meaning. The SeeTree app leverages big data to supply farmers with the information to assess, analyze, and draw correlations between variables and make evidence-based decisions for their farms. 

Digitized Citrus Grove

Organizational Methods That Are Stuck In The Past

Many farmers still use spreadsheets or a good old pen and paper to collect and organize data. Yet, these traditional methods are time-consuming and prone to error. Farmers may have to spend countless hours searching through and organizing extensive files. It can even be hard to be sure of the exact number of trees in each grove and easy to make mistakes when counting. 

This may seem like a minor problem, but misrepresenting the number of healthy, underperforming, non-producing, or non-bearing trees can lead to inaccurate yield forecasting down the line.  

SeeTree Helps Farmers Leverage Big Data 

The SeeTree app replaces these outdated organizational methods by streamlining farming practices. It monitors:

  • Tree counts and tree growth 
  • Grove health 
  • Pests and diseases 
  • Irrigation practices
  • Fruit yield 
  • Overapplication of pesticides 
  • Weed control and bindweed detection

SeeTree’s customizable dashboard settings allow you to monitor the factors that matter to you, whether that's pests and diseases, tree uprooting, replant capacity, fruit count per tree, or an overall assessment of the grove. At the level of individual trees, the app has digitized orchard maps that illustrate all components pertinent to grove health. Meanwhile, the BI dashboard shows the big picture by grouping data points and displaying them in an easily-interpreted format. 

How it Works: A Use-Case

A farmer uses SeeTree to digitize each grove. The farmer then customizes the SeeTree dashboard to focus the display on pest and disease monitoring. Based on the data, the farmer can see how different varieties are affected by climate conditions i.e. a comparison between fritz and nonpareil almond varieties. Using this information, the farmer can plan how to allocate the farm’s limited budget and resources to strategize which varieties to plant when planning, irrigation methods to use, and where to replant for the next season. 

Reaping the Benefits of Digitization

These features affect the way farmers look at individual trees as well as whole groves and farms. But more importantly, they have a broader influence on the way the entire operation is run, how we think about production, and how decisions are made. 

Weekly Detection

Tracks Trees Over Time

The SeeTree app consolidates and displays data continuously, enabling farmers to track the status of their groves in real-time and over time. Constantly monitoring the trees and providing updated information helps identify patterns and recurring problems.   

Benchmarks With Reliable Data

With all the relevant information literally at their fingertips, farmers can compare and contrast between and within groves. For example, you can evaluate the grove's health and productivity overall or find the percentage of underperforming trees of a specific variety. Benchmarking through the SeeTree app offers insights that can help determine how to adjust current farming practices or plan future orchard varieties. 

Facilitates Smart Decisions

Farmers can rely on the SeeTree app for accurate information, displayed in a clear, digestible format. This lets you make data-based decisions that impact every aspect of the farming process, from root-scion combinations to fertilizer quantity and tree varieties for the next season. 

Opens the Door to Collaboration 

Making data accessible to all farm employees, from managers to executives, helps everyone stay on the same page and encourages strong collaboration. Every time the app is used, the dashboard is updated and synced automatically, so that every stakeholder gets the same relevant and reliable information.  

Digitization ensures that you are working with the best possible information at all times. But it can do more than that. The SeeTree app lets you take full advantage of your data by helping you to process and share it. Better information is the first step to better decision-making by individuals and teams, and that leads directly to greater efficiency and higher-quality produce.

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