Remote sensing applications in tobacco yield estimation and the recommended research in Zimbabwe
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Tobacco crop area and yield forecasts are important in stabilizing tobacco prices at the auction floors. Tobacco yield estimation in Zimbabwe is currently based on statistical surveys and ground-based field reports.These methods are costly, time consuming, and are prone to large errors. Remote sensing can provide timely information on crop spectral characteristics which can be used to estimate crop yields. Remote sensing application on agriculture in Zimbabwe is still very limited. Research should focus on identifying suitable reflectance indices that are related to tobacco growth and yield. Varietal yield response to fertilizer and planting dates as well as suitable temporal windows for spectral data collection should be identified. The challenges of the different tobacco land sizes have to be overcome by identifying suitable satellite platform, with sufficient spectral resolution to separate the tobacco crop from the adjacent competing crops and non-crop vegetative surfaces.The identified suitable index should be strongly correlated with tobacco in season dry mass and yield. The suitable vegetative indices can be employed in establishing tobacco cropped area and then apply the long-term area yield relationship from government and nongovernmental statistical departments to estimate yield from remote sensing derived cropped area.
Additional Citation InformationSvotwa, E., Masuka, A. J., Maasdorp, B., Murwira, A., & Shamudzarira, M. (2013). Remote Sensing Applications in Tobacco Yield Estimation and the Recommended Research in Zimbabwe. ISRN Agronomy, 1–7. http://doi.org/10.1155/2013/941873