PlantTech institute looks into kiwifruit orchard stress

In addition to research on plantation forests, the PlantTech institute  -Ministry for Business, Innovation & Employment’s (MBIE)- is leading a two-year international project that uses airborne remote sensors to discover what is causing plant stress in kiwifruit orchards. The project received $1 million in MBIE funding.

Research started in November on an airborne remote sensor project. Researchers want to determine how a sensor can measure sun-induced fluorescence (SIF) – an indicator of photosynthetic activity and plant stress, such as a lack of water, high temperatures and nutrient deficiency.

Principal Research Scientist Dr Alvaro Orsi is leading the project and says data from multiple aerial and ground sensors will be used to generate maps showing the photosynthetic activity of kiwifruit.

“These maps will help kiwifruit growers understand what regions in their orchards are photosynthesising less efficiently and pinpoint the cause of this plant stress. Such capability will allow growers to improve kiwifruit orchard productivity and environmental sustainability.”

Source: sunlive.co.nz


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