Vyacheslav Bykov, a graduate of Agrotechnology and Ecology Department of the Tavria State Agrotechnological University (TSAU), a leading engineer at the Institute of Evolutionary Ecology of the National Academy of Science of Ukraine shares his experience of measuring leaf area with Petiole. He shares his feedback and provides insights about his scientific work.
The latest experience
I would like to share my latest experience with you – at my official job, we had to measure leaves of Bolle’s poplar (Pōpulus pyramidālis). We had six tests with 250 leaves in each. Totally, it was a big amount of work.
Our task was to measure the surface area of all leaves and we outlined them on graph paper, calculate square centimetres, but we had many errors and decided to find a new method. This was scanning of leaves, using special software to a colour image. This application estimates the number of pixels. After that, using the third software, we calculated an area of the colour fill area. So it was a very long and labour-intensive process.
A magic wand for leaf area
I would ask this magic wand that an area of the leaf, which I am measuring now, will be transferred into the required cell of Microsoft Excel. Hence, I will speed up the process of leaf surface area measurement and also – to obtain the results of my research. Measuring leaf area provides ambiguous value but we can extract very interesting data using it. For example, adaptive potential, an area of photosynthetic activity in a field. It is possible to define these parameters with this number. Consequently, if I had a magic wand – I would surely use it for its intended purposes.
Learn from experience, a highly interesting and fascinating application. It is the 21st century now – the age of computers, almost everyone has an Android mobile phone. I have the same phone too. After installing Petiole to my phone, I have measured leaf area of ten plant leaves just in three minutes. I could not believe in my happiness since before I spent hours on this simple but so important (and annoying) task.
In other words, I have done the required measurements very quickly. Also, the authors of this great invention told me, that it is possible to measure leaf area exactly staying near the tree. Or being in the field. Or in the lab. Thanks to a special measuring stand it is a reality now. So I think this is a great thing. Petiole app is a very interesting and cool application for my professional use and colleagues who are doing agriculture science. I will use it, honestly.
Full video (with English subtitles) of the interview with Vyacheslav Bykov, a leading engineer at the Institute of Evolutionary Ecology, you can find below:
Brief Description of Petiole
Petiole is a precision agriculture technology company developing solutions to improve agricultural research and decision-making about yields. Petiole provides accurate data with an advanced data analytics platform to help researchers make faster, more informed decisions. Petiole works with agriculture’s leading research institutions to remove technical challenges of specific leaf area measurement. Petiole can support agricultural research, agricultural chemistry, education, arable farming, ecology and horticulture.
Petiole, a mobile application, measures plant leaf area and chlorophyll content using a camera on a mobile phone in real-time. This information can be used to help agronomists, agricultural scientists, crop-protection and seed companies to get more valuable plants, yields and insights. In November 2015, Petiole was ranked among the ‘20 Hottest Startup Ideas of the Year’ by CNBC.