Monday 26 November 2018

New, Improved (and now award-winning) Irrigation Remote Management

Lindsay Corporation, global leaders in the development of innovative irrigation solutions, are keeping farmers ahead of the game with the latest enhancements to their FieldNET® mobile app. Available on Apple App Store® and Google Play™, the app is now more user-friendly with improved access, visibility and control of center pivots and lateral irrigation systems. Advancements to the variable rate irrigation control functions also make managing Growsmart Precision VRI systems even easier.  

The new app has been selected as an AE50 Award winner for 2019. Presented by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, the award recognizes the year's most innovative designs in engineering products or systems for the food and agriculture industries.

The technology offers seamless remote monitoring and control, integrating a farmer’s irrigation tools and systems. It is compatible with almost any electric pivot brand and delivers real-time information so farmers can see exactly what their systems are doing and control them quickly and easily from a smartphone, tablet or computer.

Key features and new, real-time functionalities now available via the FieldNET mobile app include:

  • The ability to enable/disable auto-restart and auto-reverse
  • End gun controls including aerial views
  • The ability to shut down multiple pivots simultaneously
  • Displays time remaining for current circle or until the next stop
  • An integrated pivot and VRI control dashboard
  • VRI plan previews overlaying satellite imagery
  • Increased VRI plan editing options
  • Live VRI system status data
“The new app delivers many new features and enhancements to FieldNET customers, several of which come in response to past customer requests,” said Reece Andrews, director of FieldNET and Zimmatic controls at Lindsay Corporation. “The new FieldNET mobile app has an extremely intuitive and fast user interface, offering an enhanced level of mobility and precision that growers won’t find with other remote irrigation management solutions.”

FieldNET is one of the most cost-effective remote irrigation management tools on the market. Lindsay’s commitment to developing innovative irrigation solutions ensures farmers can stay ahead of the game by having more timely, useful information to aid decision-making, making the most effective use of time managing their irrigation, minimising the need to visit the pivot and improving water and energy use. 

For more information about FieldNET, talk to your local Zimmatic dealer or visit 

Thursday 8 November 2018

Ashburton A&P Show

Agri Optics showcased their services at the 141st annual A&P show in Ashburton on the 26th and 27th October, to catch up with existing clients and field enquiries from prospective clients. Despite the torrential rain while setting up on the Thursday, the show days themselves were thankfully a great deal better. I thought I’d write a blog about the sort of questions the team were answering as a point of interest to those who weren’t able to make it.

Picture 1: Nick Evans and Lucy Murray on a muddy Friday morning after finishing set up!
The theme of this year’s show was chosen by the President David Butterick and was “Irrigation – the life blood of mid Canterbury” – this is a great fit for Agri Optics’ services and solutions. It was also the topic we fielded most enquiries about!

Picture 2 & 3: The team answering clients enquiries.

There was much interest in EM surveying and how it can be used for variable rate irrigation to make better use of water, as well as a helping make more informed decisions on where to place your moisture probes.  We had people enquire about using their EM maps and VRI to conserve water and use that water elsewhere on the farm with potentially large savings to be made by not having to buy more water shares.

Picture 4 & 5: Areas of most discussion EM surveying and AquaCheck moisture probes!

The main point of discussion however was about moisture probes; from looking at the different options available to the different telemetry types and other sensors that can be added to the systems. From weather stations to milk vat monitoring to comply with the MPI Milk Cooling legislation that came into force in June 2018.

We ran many clients through their AquaCheck graphs and explained what they were seeing, things to avoid like getting spikes going through all the profile layers and how much water to put on and where the moisture trace should be sitting at different times of the year, which was very similar to the workshops we ran a couple of months ago. If you are unsure of what your AquaCheck Web graphs are telling you then please get in touch and we can help run you through the data, or if we are in your area we are happy to come and see you to go through it all. So just get in touch as making informed decisions is of paramount importance.

We will be at the Innovation Vineyard field day in Blenheim, which is run by the Marlborough Grape Growers Cooperative on the 14th November, the NZ Effluent expo at Mystery Creek on the 27-28 November, and at the FAR Crops event in Chertsey on 5th December. We look forward to catching up at one of these or other events in the coming months.

Agri Optics

Sunday 4 November 2018

Is your irrigator due for a service?

Regular maintenance, just like servicing your car, will help ensure your irrigation system is running at full capacity when the heat comes on. Irrigation system checks and servicing should be undertaken at scheduled times over the irrigation season (the more hours your irrigator runs for the more regularly these checks should be carried out). 

In many cases you can refer to your irrigation systems instruction manual for details on servicing and maintenance checks.

Many simple checks and servicing like lubricating joints, replacing oil in gearboxes and looking for signs of fatigue can often be carried out by farm staff. However, should you be unsure or think that you might have detected an issue don’t hesitate to contact your irrigation dealer. 

Grafton Irrigation (Zimmatic dealer based in South Canterbury) have put together a handy checklist to guide you through the checks and maintenance that will help prevent mid-season issues. The checklist covers your intake, pump shed and mainline, and pivot, hard hose, soft hose, K-line and G-set (solid set) type irrigation systems. Print yourself a copy using the link below.

This post has been written by Sarah Elliot from Lindsay NZ - thanks to Grafton Irrigation for your input!