Farm field data - Putnam Sentinel
The image on the left represents a a whole field soil test, the most basic approach a farmer can take. The middle image shows a field broken down into two and a half acre grids. Sample cores are taken at each point with the results entered into GIS mapping software to produce a representation of soil fertility on a grid basis. The image on the right utilizes aerial imagery, soil type data, yield data, and topography maps. Multiple soil samples are taken in each zone, creating a map of soil fertility on a zone by zone basis. (Images submitted)

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PUTNAM COUNTY — We have come to that time of year when advances in farming techniques and the quickening pace of field technology can be seen with the naked eye. We all know the old phrase, ‘Knee high by the 4th of July.’ Look around though, and most of the corn growing throughout Northwest Ohio this past week was already chest high, at least, and planted closer together than ever.

Newer hybrids represent a large part of the equation. A better understanding of the fields by the farmers who care for them is another. This understanding is being driven more and more by...

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