From a rescue fungicide application to cover crop seeding, sprayer and spreader drones are earning their place on farms. They can provide a cheaper, faster and more flexible method for in-field applications.

Awkward acres or small applications are where drones win the efficiency race, adds Emily Carlson, director of marketing for Rantizo.

“In terms of economics, drones are best in sub-field applications,” she says. “If 25% of your field needs sprayed in one corner and 10% on the opposite corner, a drone is a better option. If you’re talking hundreds of acres of flat rectangular fields, a ground rig is probably a better choice.”

Drones can quickly treat random outbreaks of end-of-season weeds or interseed cover crops without damaging the growing crop, Carlson says.

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