OMAFRA CEA Webinar Series: Smart Sensors for Floriculture

Ever thought your plants were looking a little chlorotic, but didn’t want to waste time or money on tests? What if an smartphone app could tell you their nitrogen level? What if low cost sensors could help you monitor plant growth and tell you when PGRs are needed?

Having previously covered topics such as artificial intelligence and smart spraying, OMAFRA is continuing it’s CEA Webinar series, looking specifically at smart sensors. And they don’t have to be anything fancy to help you monitor your crop.

Although “floriculture” is in the title, the sensors and apps Dr. Krishna Nemali from Purdue University will discuss have applications across all avenues of controlled environment agriculture. Keep reading for details on the webinar, and how to register.

Knowing when to apply PGRs to crops like poinsettia is critical. A smart phone app could help make things easier with less staff training.

CEA Webinar: Smart Sensors for Floriculture:

Date: Monday, September 27, 2021

Time: 11:00-12:00 EST

Where: Zoom


Our Speaker:

Dr. Krishna Nemali joined the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University in July 2016 as an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist. His doctoral research focused on the development of plant-based automated irrigation techniques using sensors and studies related to the physiological responses of floriculture crops to varying levels of light, water, and nitrogen during production. Prior to joining Purdue, he worked at Monsanto Company in the U.S. for nearly nine years as a Controlled Environment Crop Physiologist. At Purdue, Dr. Nemali has responsibility for extension, research, and teaching activities related to Controlled Environment Agriculture. He published nearly 30 scientific articles and 25 extension publications and received several federal and industry grants. Recently, he received Purdue University Cooperative Extension Specialists Association (PUCESA) Early Career Award. He was recognized as scholarship of engagement fellow, societal impact fellow, and entrepreneurial learning academy fellow at Purdue University.

The Topic:

Because of intensive nature of farming, operational costs are high in floriculture industry. Increasing crop productivity and reducing resource wastage are essential for profits in floriculture production.

Continuous monitoring of plants for growth and quality related issues is extremely important for maximizing crop productivity and optimizing resource-use. However, this requires trained workforce who are knowledgeable about plant growth and quality related issues. Unfortunately, availability of trained workforce is limited in floriculture industry, especially during the pandemic.

Our lab is developing plant-monitoring techniques using affordable and easy-to-use devices, such as smartphones and low-cost remote sensors. These ‘smart sensors’ capture and process plant images to generate economically useful information including seedling counts, plant growth rate, height and width, nitrogen status, and color development (and potentially many other traits). In addition to aiding in plant monitoring, these devices can train workforce with plant growth and quality related issues. In this presentation, I will describe about technology development, conduct a virtual demonstration, and sha re our plans on making this technology available to floriculture growers globally.

Want more info or having trouble registering? Email Dr. Sarah Jandricic at

One thought on “OMAFRA CEA Webinar Series: Smart Sensors for Floriculture

Leave a Reply