Charts And Curves: Tool For Effective Crop Monitoring

So, you have received all that scouting data from the satellite. Now what? It’s time to make really good use of it. We are committed to making the user experience as easy as possible. That’s why you will find all of the data gathered in one place, in the form of a chart.

We offer two kinds of charts: standard and extended.

Standard Chart

The cool thing about the standard chart is that it is:

  • easy to find
  • combines a lot of data in one place.

You won’t have to meticulously switch from tab to tab in search of this chart. It is waiting for you, right there in the Fields tab. Select any field and the standard chart will load automatically in an analytics window below the map.

standard chart after loading Crop Monitoring page

By default, as soon as you log into your account, you are in the Fields tab. At this point, the map takes up most of the space on the screen. Don’t panic! To the right of the screen there is a list of your fields (that is, if you have already added some fields to the list).

choosing a field from the list on Crop Monitoring

If your field is already in the list, click on it. That’s all that it takes to get to the standard chart.

standard chart at the bottom of Crop Monitoring interface

On this chart, you will find several different types of data gathered over a period of time:

  • Annual vegetation indices curve
  • Growth stages vertical dashed rays
  • Weather data curve

This last curve varies depending on the type of weather data that you can select in a separate menu on the left. Locate the Weather Data bar with the word “Temperature” and click the arrow to roll out the menu.

selecting the indicators to display as a curve on chart

Okay, now let’s focus on the chart itself, to better understand how to work with it.

Annual Vegetation & Moisture Indices Curves

We’re talking NDVI, NDRE, MSAVI, ReCL, and NDMI here. To avoid clutter, we have designed the chart so it won’t display more than one vegetation index type at a time.

default annual vegetation indices curves

Above you can see the default version of the standard chart, with five annual NDVI curves (seen in light green, violet, yellow, pink, and dark green) displayed. In the legend, each of them looks like a pair of years separated by a forward slash. How do you know these five curves represent the NDVI index? Make sure to check the top left corner of the chart. A quick glance will tell you exactly which vegetation index curve it is.

legends to each of the vegetation indices curves

You can click the downward arrow next to it and select any of the three other indices in the drop-down menu.

switching between the vegetation indices

Switch from index to index in just one click, to increase the accuracy of crop monitoring.

Scale

You may notice that the scale to the left of the chart is the same for four vegetation indices (NDVI, NDRE, MSAVI, NDMI), and totally different for the ReCl curve. While the value of NDVI, NDRE, MSAVI, and NDMI ranges between -1 and 1, the ReCl value starts at 0 and has no upper limit. That’s because ReCl is measured differently from the other three. Since ReCl measures the chlorophyll content, which is directly proportional to its value. The more chlorophyll in the plant, the higher the ReCl index.

dynamic scales on the chart

Manage your fields with high-resolution satellite images for the most accurate and timely changes detection!

Check The Vegetation Indices For Up To Five Years!

By default, there are always five vegetation index curves on the chart at a time, each representing one season. You can deactivate any, or all of them by clicking the legend icons above with years.

default representsion of five vegetation index curves on Crop Monitoring

As you can see, it may look a little confusing. For your convenience, we have assigned a different color to every individual curve. This bird’s-eye view allows you to compare how your crops were doing each year. You can turn any curve on or off, trying different combinations.

turning vegetation index curves on and off

For instance, on this particular chart, only two NDVI curves are activated and they are two years apart. Try any combinations you like to get a better understanding of your crops health over five years.

You can also use the calendar view on the left to set any range of dates that you want.

setting the date range for vegetation index curves to display on Crop Monitoring

Growth Stages

There are also vertical dashed rays indicating various growth stages of your crops, based on the international BBCH scale. You will see the growth stages both on standard and extended charts.

Note: Growth stages are currently available only for the following countries:

  • Ukraine
  • Russia
  • Canada
  • USA

And only for certain crops:

  • Spring barley
  • Maize
  • Winter rapeseed
  • Soybean
  • Sugarbeet
  • Sunflower
  • Winter Wheat
  • Peas (only in Ukraine)

historical growth stages of crop along with min and max air temperatures on Crop Monitoring chart

However, to see the growth stages on the chart, you will need to tell the system two important bits of information first:

  • Crop name
  • Sowing date

Locate the sidebar with the standard information about the selected field. It is on the right side of the screen. And find the little Crop rotation bar. Under the Sowing Date, click +Add.

how to add crop type and its sowing date on Crop Monitoring

In the example above, a crop’s name is selected by default, but as you can see, there are no growth stages displayed on the chart. Do not let the default settings trick you, do it yourself in 3 easy steps:

  1. Click +Add and wait for an edit window to pop up in the center of the screen.

field details window to set crops types and their sowing dates on Crop Monitoring

2. Set all the crop names and sowing dates you need by clicking on the little arrows and calendar icons.

entering crop types and their sowing dates

3. Click “Save” and you are golden

saving crop types and their sowing dates in Crop Monitoring Edit Field window

You will always recognize the Growth stages on the chart by the distinct dark yellow color of their icons, dashed rays, and legends.

Weather Data Curve

You can choose between four different weather data curve types, they are:

  • Temperature
  • Precipitation
  • Cold stress
  • Heat stress

weather data curves on Crop Monitoring

Is The Temperature Rising Or Falling?

This weather data curve always appears on the chart by default, actually it’s not one curve but two:

  • Maximum air temperature curve
  • Minimum air temperature curve

Their color is always blue: lighter blue for the maximum air temperature and darker blue for the minimum. To the right of the chart is the temperature scale.

scales to understand the weather data curves on Crop Monitoring

It is easy to see how the three curves correlate with each other on the chart. You can see how similar or different their shapes are at any given point; whether they both are going up or down at the same time or not. As for the height of the vegetation index curve, it only relates to the scale on the left.

Precipitation

To learn how much rain has poured over your crops for a given period of time, select the word “Precipitation” from the drop-down list. Though, instead of a curve, you will see a row of vertical bars.

precipitation curve scale on Crop Monitoring

On the right of the screen is the precipitation scale in millimeters (metric system).You can see in this example that in late August and early September there was a dry period, but sometime between the 1st and 10th of August, precipitation levels were rather high. In fact, there must have been a heavy downpour on the 4th of August, as is more evident when you zoom in closer.

zooming date range to get more precision data from weather charts on Crop Monitoring

You can always zoom in on the chart to get a more accurate picture of the precipitation values. Remember that the vegetation index curve is based off of the observations of a satellite which has a certain revisit cycle (returns to observe your field every 5 days or so). An extreme close-up can turn a continuous vegetation curve into a series of curves, it is absolutely normal and there is nothing to worry about.

Nevertheless, you can still zoom in to check precipitation for any given day, since we receive that data from a different source daily.

Cold Stress/Heat Stress

Sometimes bad things happen to your crops when the air temperature goes even slightly over a certain critical line. We have separated the heat stress from the cold stress, not to mix them up on the chart. Below you can see both versions of the chart.

heat stress curve on Crop Monitoring

cold stress curve on Crop Monitoring

Let’s make several observations here:

  • Observation 1. Both heat and cold stresses appear on the chart like dashed red lines, high or low, respectfully.
  • Observation 2. Maximum and minimum air temperature curves presence is required for reference, to know exactly when the heat/cold stresses happen.
  • Observation 3. The heat stress chart has the maximum air temperature curve, while the cold stress chart has the minimum air temperature curve.

Whenever the air temperature curves cross the critical heat/cold stress boundaries, eerie red vertical bars appear that signal the possibility of bad times for your crop.

vertical dark red bar representing crossing critical cold stress value

The critical temperature value is always displayed in a dark red color on the scale to the right of the chart.

Extended Data Charts

To begin with, it is slightly more difficult to find these, but not so difficult. There are four of them and they all belong to the Historical Weather pane of the Weather tab. Here they are:

historical weather data curves on Crop Monitoring

  • Accumulated precipitation
  • Daily precipitation
  • Daily temperatures
  • Sum of active temperatures

Each of these is to give you a deeper insight into the weather changes on your field over time.

Here, you can switch from field to field in the list on the right.

historical weather data curves on Crop Monitoring

You can see the correlation between growth stages, accumulated precipitation levels, daily precipitation rates, daily temperatures, and the sum of active temperatures over a period of time, up to five years.

Note: Historical Weather is only available for Pro users.

Let’s take a better view at each of these four extended charts.

Accumulated Precipitation

accumulated precipitation curve on Crop Monitoring

It is easy to see here how the precipitation has been steadily accumulating over a year, in blue. The blue legend above tells you over which year exactly, while the orange legend explains that the orange curve represents the average rate of precipitation accumulation over five years. Note that the orange curve is similar, yet slightly different than the blue accumulated precipitation mass.

To see the 5 Years Average curve, you need to click on the legend since it is off by default.

Daily Precipitation

daily precipitation chart on Crop Monitoring

This chart may remind you of the precipitation row of vertical bars on the standard chart in the Fields tab, with one important difference; along with the usual blue vertical bars for this year, there are also the orange ones to tell you about the average daily precipitation rate over the last five years. In other words, you can see, for example, how much more, or less rain has fallen on a particular day, compared to the 5 year average value.

Daily Temperatures

daily temperatures curves on Crop Monitoring

Similarly to the daily precipitation chart, two sets of data are compared:

  • In blue: maximum/minimum air temperatures for the given period of time (in this case, from March of 2019 to March of 2020).
  • In yellow/orange: the 5-year average figures for these two temperature curves.

Sum Of Active Temperatures

sum of active temperatures curve on Crop Monitoring

The green mass on this chart illustrates the rate of the accumulation of daily temperatures over the past year (here, 2019/2020). The orange curve, on the other hand, allows you to compare the annual rate with the 5-year average one.

Note: you can manually set the minimum temperature value in the drop-down menu on the top left. You can choose between three available minimum temperatures: 0, 5, and 10 degrees Celsius or 32, 41, 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If the minimum temperature value is 0C / 32F, all of the active temperatures higher than that will sum up on the chart. However, if you set the 10C / 50F minimum, the 0-10C / 32-50F temperatures will not be represented on the chart (taken into account).

scale and metric system of sum of active temperatures chart on Crop Monitoring

One more tip: you may choose between two modes of view, as follows:

  • with the 5 years average curve
  • without the 5 years average curve

adding or removing "5 years average" curve on active temperatres chart on Crop Monitoring

If you don’t see the orange curve and the legend that says “5 Years Average”, you probably have it set to “None.”

disabled "5 years average" curve on active temperatres chart on Crop Monitoring

On each of these four charts you will see the growth stages, to not lose the sight of your crops. Just remember that growth stages can be displayed only in certain countries and for certain crops, according to the table below. And you need to manually enter the type of crop, as well as its sowing date first.

Ukraine Russia Canada USA
Spring barley Spring barley Spring barley Spring barley
Maize Maize Maize Maize
Winter rapeseed Winter rapeseed Winter rapeseed Winter rapeseed
Soybean Soybean Soybean Soybean
Sugarbeet Sugarbeet Sugarbeet Sugarbeet
Sunflower Sunflower Sunflower Sunflower
Winter wheat Winter wheat Winter wheat Winter wheat
Peas

growth stages along with weather charts data on Crop Monitoring

Remember that all of these technical weather data charts serve only one purpose, to give you the tools for keeping your crops in good health.

So Much Data! No Worries: Trust To The Charts

As you can see, we gather large quantities of data about your crops over long periods of time (i.e. temperatures, weather, cold/heat stresses, and precipitation rates). So we’ve put all of that data on our dashboard as charts, to minimize your time and effort in interpreting it. The standard chart contains most of the information you need, displayed on a single screen. With the extended charts found in the Weather analytics tab, you are all set and ready to monitor your fields with precision.

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