9. Software system for plant growth prediction.
CSIRO Publications, 314 Albert Street, East Melbourne, Victoria 3002, Australia; 1992
Farmers have predicted plant growth according to their experience for thousands of years. Now a new software system, PLANTGRO, combines this experience with modern scientific techniques to provide new ways of predicting the growth of hundreds of plant species, including some lesser-known plants.
The PLANTGRO package, which was designed by the Division of Tropical Crops and Pastures of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization of Australia (CSIRO), comes with a handbook which uses a simple skill-rating system.
It encourages users to go at their own pace. In this way, people who have a strong feeling for plants but have little contact with computers or formal plant science, quickly realise that their expertise is valuable and can be recorded. The package provides starter data-files for 60 plants, 30 soils and 40 climates.
PLANTGRO can be used in numerous contexts. For farmers, foresters and rural advisers, it provides an on-the-spot means of thinking about new land-use options. For planners at higher levels who use computerized resource information systems, it represents an add-on package which can give life to soil and climate data held in store. And for those struggling to integrate scraps of information about lesser-known plants, it provides procedures for almost every situation.
Crops covered include banana, cashew, cassava, cocoa, coconut, coffee, cowpea, kenaf, lentil, maize, oil palm, pineapple, potato, rubber, soybean, sugarcane, sweet potato, taro, wheat and yam. Trees include
Acacia spp. and tropical hardwoods.
Software programme language is GWBASIC (not supplied), System: MS DOS 3.2 or higher. Total access is given to software. Editing and upgrading of data-files can be performed by using a simple word processing package.
The price is $A65 for the handbook only and $A40 for disks only.
1099 92 - 4/142
USA, Florida, study, wetlands, flood-tolerant crops, low-input agriculture, soil conservation strategies, alemangrass, sugarcane, rice, taro, crop management, water management, economics
PORTER, P.S. et al.
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