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Get accurate weather data using your own Weather Station

If you are a farmer in Kenya, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have a weather station. The weather and its variability plays a direct role in the success (or failure) of your farm. Take for example bailing hay: having a weather station will help you decide whether conditions are right to do so. Or perhaps you have temperature-sensitive crops. Picking the right time to plant your seeds could mean the difference between failure and success.

The most common reason for farm failure is crop failure due to weather-related events. While a farm weather station won’t eliminate this threat, it will at least help you become better prepared for it. Knowing is half the battle, so why be in the dark about something so important to your livelihood?

There’s another good reason for a weather station on your farm, too. Chances are you’re far away from the nearest official weather station, which are typically in city or town far away. Weather is so variable that it can change over the course of a few miles, so it’s foolish to base your decisions on weather data from a station in the city. A weather station will help you manage your crops more efficiently, for example, it will provide you with the data to make better irrigation decisions, protect crops from hail damage and help you observe wind conditions before spraying.

Farms of any size benefit from weather data. For a small farm, a single station is likely sufficient. However, larger farms might want to consider several. If you have 1,000 acres or more, you’ll want to have weather data from several spots on your property.

There’s good reason for this, too. It’s entirely possible that weather conditions like temperature and humidity may vary over very small distances, and may be important in making decisions on whether to spray pesticides, lay manure and perform other weather-dependent farm maintenance.

Using the Data from your Weather Station?

Weather stations give you an up-to-the-minute glimpse at the weather, but the best way to use this data is to look for patterns over time. Take for example crop planting. If they’re susceptible to cold weather, you’re certainly not going to want to plant crops when the risk is still high. By using archived weather station data over a period of time, you’ll be able to make a better decision on when is best to plant those crops and irrigate them.

The Importance of the Forecast

Yes, we’ve stressed the need for farmers to own a weather station, but it would be irresponsible not to mention the importance of also staying on top of weather forecasts. A personal weather station is not going to give you warning of crop-damaging hail. Meteorologists are trained to predict these events and can give you days to prepare rather than minutes or hours.

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Your weather station is still useful here, for example, on a cold night when a hard freeze is predicted, you can use the station to monitor the actual temperature, and adjust your mitigation efforts to minimize loss.

Weather Affects Your Agribusiness

Weather plays a huge role in your livelihood as a farmer. One miscalculation could mean crop failure. With overhead costs so high these days, there is very little room for error. It’s for this reason why we highly recommend all farmers invest in a personal weather station.

While you won’t be able to stop severe weather events, you’ll at least be armed with hyper-local weather data to understand better how you might be affected, and how you should react. It might be a several thousand (or a million shilling) investment, but we think it is a wise one.

You can purchase a weather station by clicking Here

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  • Joseph Boit

    Joseph is the founder of Graduate Farmer, a Kenyan online platform that provides resources and tools to help farmers improve their agricultural practices and increase their productivity. Joseph is a passionate follower of Christ and farmer who loves to use technology to make a positive impact on people's lives.


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