Sep 25, 2023 Member Spotlight – PrairieLand Partners
Attendees were impressed by John Deere’s latest technologies at the September 21st Chamber Connection hosted by PrairieLand Partners. They aren’t your grandpa’s tractors, that’s for sure! Kelly Pitts, store manager since 2014 shared videos and answered questions about autonomous tractors and “See and Spray” technology, which both would have seemed like science fiction a few decades ago.
John Deere technology allows farmers to run driverless, autonomous tractors with an app on their phones, reducing their labor load. During peak seasons, these tractors can run 24 hours a day, letting the farmer pay closer attention to other tasks that need to be done. Cameras on the tractor will detect foreign objects in the path of the tractor, making it stop and send an alert not only to the farmer’s phone app but also to John Deere. This technology can be retrofitted to tractors dating back to 2018, when GPS technology became standard. Soon, Pitts said, they’ll be able to install it into tractors older than that.
John Deere’s See & Spray technology uses proprietary camera technology to isolate weeds from crop plants when spraying herbicides. It is cost-efficient and more environmentally sound, reducing herbicide use by up to two thirds. Amazingly, all of this happens in the blink of an eye as the Boom-Trac travels at 12 miles per hour. McPherson’s PrairieLand Partners has sold 14 of these so far. Pitts said that a Salina-area farmer shared with him that he’s saving 70% on his chemical bill since buying it.
Chamber Connection attendees were also invited to tour the PrairieLand Partners’ impressive facility, which includes retail, conference rooms, offices, a large workshop, and two parts warehouses. Catch some glimpses in the Chamber Connection photos. Learn more about PrairieLand Partners on their website and Facebook.