The cultivation of tomatoes in Spain is very delicate due to climatic variables, for this reason, the use of precision agriculture is becoming more widespread for its crop.
Of South American origin, he arrived with Hernán Cortés in the Canary Islands and there he acclimatized well and took 200 years to reach the Peninsula and the rest of Europe.
Cultivation of tomatoes in Spain
In Spain tomatoes are grown in all regions, but with intensive plantations especially Extremadura, Andalusia and Murcia.
First you have to collect the seeds, dry them and keep them until we make the seedbeds.
The mastic is the place where they are planted until we have some seedlings that can be transplanted. They must have good drainage so that irrigation does not rot the small roots of the plants and a good temperature.
You can make a seedbed in a piece of soil or in individual cups with two or three seeds in each.
In this process it is already important to control irrigation with humidity sensors. If this is not done, it is easy for fungi to appear and cause the delicate plants to die.
The last step is to transplant the tomatoes into the tomato plants.
Precision agriculture in the cultivation of tomatoes
It is not always within the reach of all producers to have information on their farms by GPS or geographic information systems.
But if it is possible and at low cost to have:
- Performance sensors (on plant, soil, weeds and medium).
- Humidity, temperature and conductivity sensors type Plantae.
- Cartographies of mineral element content.
- Aerial photos with drones.
- As well decision making models.
All this makes the productions improve in quality and quantity.
Tomatoes prefer a dry climate, suitable temperatures, and controlled watering.
Excessive humidity is the first cause of diseases, both fungi and bacteria. It also influences tomato cracking. Consequently, they must have an adequate irrigation system and also a gutter so that the plant can climb.
Otro punto importante es la poda
Una vez que el tomate alcanza unos 40 centímetros, debemos controlar la rama principal y eliminar los chupones que brotan entre las hojas y el tallo.
Con una periodicidad de unos 15 días hay que repasar los tomates, entutorarlos y eliminar los chupones.
La poda y el riego controlado garantizan tomates de calidad y salud de la planta.
Plantae in the cultivation of tomatoes in Spain
One of the main problems of growing tomatoes is the scarcity of water. Controlling the plantation throughout the phenological process and optimizing the crop with savings of up to 40% is something that farmers value.
Humidity control and root temperature will influence the quality of the tomato and the uniformity of production. The sensors can be installed at a depth of 15 and 30 centimeters.
Plantae carried out several trials in 2017 with pink tomato obtaining irrigation parameters to obtain the best possible "pink tomato" in the area of Barbastro, Huesca.
- Wet bulb humidity at different depths adapted to the tomato variety.
- Conductivity, to avoid accumulation of salts and deterioration of the land.
- Root temperature, that prevents us from possible diseases and therefore we can assess the good absorption of the plant.
- Flowmeter adapted to the thickness of the pipe, which measures the number of liters per square meter, in case of being an outdoor plantation.
- Ambient temperature, important in greenhouses and outdoors and lat relative humidity, especially important in greenhouses, which measures our weather station.
Sensors in plantations in Extremadura
The latest installation of humidity, conductivity, temperature and flowmeter sensors and probes, we do in an intensive plantation in Extremadura, specifically in Badajoz, in hybrid tomato.
The control is done at different depths and in strategic places so that we can assess the humidity of the entire plantation.
Intensive hybrid tomato plantation in Guareña, Badajoz
We installed probes in hybrid tomato, of the pear variety, in an intensive plantation, outdoors and tilled by furrows, with drip irrigation.
This variety is more productive and grows faster, as long as it has enough hours of sun, average temperatures and controlled irrigation.