Pelham sees Field360 as a tool that will lead to better recommendations, marketing
By Jean Caspers-Simmet
Date Modified: 11/14/2013 8:13 AM
GRUNDY CENTER — Jake Pelham has had a season to try out Pioneer Field360 Select software, and he likes what he sees.
"It's a great tool to have a database like this," Pelham said. "The present value is great, but the future value will be even greater. The information you collect and build on will allow better recommendations and marketing plans."
Pelham farms and is an associate with Joe Dier Seed, a Grundy Center Pioneer dealer. He also does crop scouting, soil sampling, makes fertilizer recommendations and sells farm chemicals, seed tenders and crop insurance with J&J Ag Solutions.
He uses the software for his farm and his businesses.
Pioneer Field360 Select from DuPont Pioneer is a web-based field management tool. The subscription service provides multiple digital tools for monitoring and predicting field progress and growth stage. These work together with interactive planting and harvest maps.
Pelham plugs fields that he scouts into the database. Some customers have done harvest data and planter maps with Pioneer so their information already is in the database. With the Field360 Notes app, he takes notes and photos at geo-referenced points in the field using his smartphone or tablet computer.
He does plant populations, looks at fertility and insect, disease and weed pressure and has the option to share the information with growers. He often emails growers reports complete with photos.
Herbicide burn, early emerging water hemp, herbicide skips, grasshopper feeding and pictures of the ears he used to make yield estimates are in this season's notes.
Pelham took pictures of his fields and calculated yield estimates using Field360 tools. Being able to determine what type of crop is out there will give him the confidence to make marketing decisions before harvest.
"When everything gets tied in and farmers can see all the different layers, whether it's the variable rate prescriptions I did, planting and harvest maps, soil series, that is when it will be the most benefit," Pelham said. "Farmers will be able to use the information to make better decisions."
Ryan Schnoes, Pioneer account manager for Black Hawk, Butler and Grundy counties, said that if Pelham sees a stalk issue, he can let growers know that they may need to harvest those fields first.
Pelham was able to demonstrate nitrogen deficiency with a picture, and the grower decided to apply additional nitrogen.
"A picture is worth a 1,000 words," Schnoes said. "Many fields lost a lot of nitrogen due to heavy rain this year. Some growers were proactive in adjusting that before the corn was too tall and some threw their hands in the air. I think some growers will be disappointed that they didn't do more."
"You can take scouting notes and apply them in post harvest months as you plan for next year whether it's product placement, weed control or nitrogen program," Schnoes said. "The whole thing is a big circle. We don't just use Field360 for one part of the year. It never stops."
Pelham and Schnoes said there are other scouting apps, but Field360 allows information to be shared between the farmer and everyone else on the Pioneer support team.
"The main benefit of the tool is the people on the ground who put all the pieces together," Schnoes said.
Farmers have planters that create maps and combine monitors that provide yield data, but making sense of it all is a challenge, Schnoes and Pelham said.
"Field360 allows us to put traction to all this information," Schnoes said.
The proprietary, secure, Web-based software runs on any Web-accessible electronic device and is compatible with data cards from most planting and harvest monitor systems. It is fully integrated with the Pioneer Field360 Notes app.
"Our big increases in yield will come from customers increasing their management understanding," Schnoes said. "If they increase yield three to four bushels per year over a 10-year period, that's pretty big."
To learn more about Pioneer Field360, growers can visit pioneer.com/360.