MSU Enviroweather serves Michigan grape and wine industries

Video presents how grape growers can use MSU Enviroweather, a weather-based information system for pest and vineyard management.

Image courtesy of Mark Longstroth, MSU Extension

Image courtesy of Mark Longstroth, MSU Extension

The overarching mission of Michigan State University’s Enviroweather is to provide relevant, dependable and sustainable weather-based information to support agricultural pest, production and natural resource management decision-making in Michigan. Such information allows for more efficient and profitable farming and for the state’s agricultural and green industries to remain competitive in global markets and economies.

Enviroweather collects, processes and archives detailed weather data from an automated meso-network of 85 sites across the state and provides a web-based framework for its use in a variety of applications and products. Weather variables monitored at each station site include air temperature and relative humidity, rainfall, wind speed and direction, solar radiation, soil temperature, volumetric soil moisture, and leaf wetness.

Observations at each station are taken automatically every 3-60 seconds (depending on sensor) and downloaded to a central computer via cellular-IP phone telemetry for dissemination to the public through via the MSU Enviroweather website. Data are updated on a real-time basis throughout the growing season at 30-minute intervals and every 3 hours November through February. The system is available for free.

The number of weather-driven applications available on the Enviroweather site has increased from 19 in 2007 to more than 60 today. The applications are generally organized by commodity type and function and range from forecasts of insect phenological stage to estimates of crop water use to tabular comparisons of recent past weather conditions with previous years. At the website, users select a nearby weather station and then are provided access to products and applications via pop-up menus. Many of the applications are interactive and some require user input (e.g., scouting observations, biofixes). Several are designed specifically for use in vineyard management. Thanks to funding from the Michigan Grape and Wine Industry Council, vineyard growers can watch a short video about Enviroweather with some user examples: “Strategic modernization of Enviroweather stations serving the Michigan grape and wine industries.”

To access “Strategic modernization of Enviroweather stations serving the Michigan grape and wine industries” and other wine grape research videos on a variety of topics, go to the Michigan State University Extension Grapes Research page.

For questions or further information regarding Enviroweather, please contact the Enviroweather project coordinator, Beth Bishop, at 517-432-6520 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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