Behind the scenes of Plantwise plant clinics in Uganda

PhD student, Andrew Tock, of the Warwick Crop Centre, has spent three months monitoring Plantwise plant clinic success in Uganda as part of a BBSRC-funded Doctoral Training Partnership. During this time, he kept a research diary (video above), describing his experiences in Uganda and the day-to-day work of plant doctors in the field.

To read an interview with Andrew, visit the BBSRC website: http://www.bbsrc.ac.uk/news/food-security/2014/141029-f-plant-clinics-in-uganda.aspx

Plantwise Data Management Training in Mozambique

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Since its launch early this year, the partnership between the Plantwise Initiative and the Ministry of Agriculture in Mozambique (MINAG) continues to grow. The National Directorate of Agrarian Services (DNSA) that falls under MINAG is the Plantwise implementing institution in Mozambique. There are currently 5 plant clinics established and running in Maputo and Manica provinces. Read more of this post

Backstopping visit to Bangkok, Thailand

As the last part of our data management trip, Claire and I headed to Bangkok for the 11th and 12th of September. We joined a group of plant doctors and farmers at the plant clinic/rally in Nong Kung village, Suppaya district, Chainat province. We saw a demonstration on biocontrol, looked through pamphlets and information available to farmers about crop problems, and discussed the rice harvest which was currently taking place. In the backstopping training at the Rice Department, the participants shared their concerns and plans for future data management in Thailand.

DSC_0294

Participants of the data management backstopping in Bangkok. ©CABI

DSC_0246

Farmers attending the clinic to listen to advice about crop protection. ©CABI

DSC_0270

Emily, Claire, Fook Wing, and Siva observing how plant clinics operate in Chainat province. ©CABI

DSC_0289

Discussing data management in Thailand. ©CABI

DSC_0269

Looking forward to a delicious meal in Nong Kung village! ©CABI

DSC_0255

Farmers learning about biocontrol products using fungal spores grown on a culture of cooked rice. ©CABI

DSC_0253

A farmer and plant doctor discussing issues with food crops. ©CABI

DSC_0244

Preserved samples and specimens for comparison purposes when diagnosing crop problems. ©CABI

DSC_0250

View from the plant clinic into part of the village – it was a beautiful, sunny day. ©CABI

Backstopping visit to Hanoi, Vietnam

After our stay in Cambodia, Claire and I continued on our way to Hanoi, Vietnam on September 8th and 9th. From there we drove out to Hưng Yên province, visiting two plant clinics and an agro-dealer. We had the opportunity to speak with farmers and plant doctors about how clinics are going, and how useful they can be for farmers to seek advice on their crops. On the way, we enjoyed some pomelo and longans, and shared a cup of tea.  Afterwards, we headed back to the city and facilitated a backstopping training session about data management for 6 participants. Together, we identified bottlenecks in the data flow process, and discussed how they can be improved.

DSC_0168

Plant doctors at Plant Clinic 8 in Hưng Yên province. ©CABI

DSC_0186

Longan season in Hưng Yên province. ©CABI

DSC_0193

Interview with the leader of Nhat Quang commune while sharing a cup of tea. ©CABI

DSC_0198

Pomelo picked fresh from the tree! ©CABI

DSC_0195

Visiting an agro-dealer and learning about the safety information available for farmers. ©CABI

DSC_0212

Claire highlighting the importance of data management. ©CABI

DSC_0176

The group visiting plant clinic 8 and talking with farmers about how much they valued the advice provided by plant doctors. ©CABI

DSC_0226

Group photo from the backstopping data management training. ©CABI

Data management training in Phnom Penh, Cambodia – looking back on a successful trip!

In the first week of September, 2014, Claire Beverley and I went to Cambodia for three days to run data management training and a cluster meeting, along with our colleague Jeremy Ngim from the CABI Malaysia office. The presentations were given in English and translated into Khmer, which was a neat experience for all. We got the opportunity to talk with plant doctors and their supervisors about current issues with data management in Cambodia, and how harmonising, analysing, and sharing of data can work within Cambodia.

DSC_1082

The General Directorate of Agriculture in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. ©CABI

DSC_1039

One of the translators, Ho Chea, patiently getting materials ready for a harmonisation exercise. ©CABI

DSC_1034

Participants listening enthusiastically to Claire presenting. ©CABI

DSC_1080

Birds of Paradise at lunch break. ©CABI

DSC_1041

Participants discussing ways issues and solutions with data flow in Cambodia. ©CABI

DSC_1075

Claire working with one of the translators, Sarika, to facilitate a discussion in both English and Khmer! ©CABI

IMG_5847

Emily, happy to be talking about data! ©CABI

DSC_1060

Claire and Emily exploring Phnom Penh in a tuk-tuk. ©CABI

DSC_1037

Delicious snacks at tea – can you name the fruits in this picture? ©CABI

 

 

Elaborando recomendaciones sobre plagas en Costa Rica

Ana María Solano Guevara elaborando una Lista Verde y Amarilla (Léna Durocher-Granger)

Ana María Solano Guevara elaborando una Lista Verde y Amarilla (Léna Durocher-Granger, CABI)

English summary follows

Costa Rica es uno de los últimos países que se agregó en la metodología de Plantwise. Del 10 al 12 de setiembre 2014, se realizó en San José un taller para la elaboración de Guías de manejo de plagas que se llaman “Listas Verde y Amarilla”. Los participantes eran expertos en entomología, fitopatología y acarología así como extensionistas agrícolas de diferentes instituciones (universidades públicas, Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería, institutos de investigación) y regiones del país. Los participantes aprendieron a elaborar consejos claros y precisos sobre algunas de las plagas más importantes para los productores y productoras en Costa Rica. Estas Listas Verde y Amarilla producidas durante el taller estarán disponibles en el Banco de Conocimientos para consulta y distribución a los productores y productoras a través de los Doctores de plantas.

Ana María Solano Guevara, ingeniera agrónoma y estudiante de maestría de la Universidad de Costa Rica contribuyó al taller con su experiencia en la disciplina de la Acarología. Ana María nos cuenta como el taller la benefició para su trabajo diario:

“El curso que impartieron me pareció de gran utilidad para el aprendizaje sobre bases de datos novedosas y actualizadas para la consulta sobre información de plagas en los cultivos, además, sobre medidas de combate químico, lo cual, muchas veces es en lo que se incurre en errores de uso así como de recomendación técnica.

Además, el tener nuevos contactos y retroalimentación con colegas del área, amplía más los conocimientos.

Me será de utilidad este aprendizaje recibido por ustedes para contribuir en mejor medida al diagnóstico de muestras en el Laboratorio de Acarología, así como de difundir la información a los estudiantes de agronomía de la universidad.

Considero que como se ha manejado el curso, se realizó de manera adecuada; se difundió información y se crearon productos como las Listas Verde y Amarillas de algunas plagas.

Les agradezco sinceramente el tiempo dedicado, la preparación así como su disponibilidad y atención en la clase y en las preguntas que teníamos como participantes.”

Para más información sobre las clínicas de plantas en su región consulte la página de Plantwise o si tiene consulta, manda un mensaje a plantwise@cabi.org

 From September 10th to 12th, a workshop in San José was given to participants from different institutions and regions around Costa Rica. Experts in entomology, plant pathology and acarology learned how to create Pest Management Decision Guides, called Green & Yellow Lists. Ana María Solano Guevara, agronomist and M.Sc. student at the University of Costa Rica, explained how the workshop will impact her work in the future: “The course given was useful for learning new innovative and updated databases on pests and crops, as well on chemical control measures. Moreover, having new contacts and feedback from colleagues broadens your knowledge. This learning will be useful for me to contribute to give better diagnosis of samples in the Acarology Laboratory, as well as to disseminate information to agronomy students at the University.”

 

Looking back on 2013: Plantwise brainstorm

2013 Plantwise knowledge bank infographic

©CABI

Last year, 2013, was a productive year for Plantwise. There were over 120,000 visits to the online knowledge bank, with over 250,000 page views. This is great news because there were over 15,000 views per month, with people exploring distribution maps, browsing the image-led diagnostic tool, and looking at factsheets on treatment of pests and diseases. Of the views, about a quarter were from PW countries, where use has doubled since the same time in 2012.

We’re excited to share that at the end of last year, there were more than 7,500 factsheets publicly available on the knowledge bank, with 550 Factsheets for Farmers, 100 Pest Management Decision Guides, 3,400 Technical Factsheets and links to 3,500 External factsheets. The Technical Factsheets included 2,500 pests that affect over 4,000 different agriculturally significant hosts.

Mobile is progressing well, with over 450 Factsheets for Farmers having been repurposed and available via tablet or smartphone. This means that plant doctors on the e-clinics pilot initiative have access to factsheet information in real-time as they fill out prescription forms, making diagnoses and recommendations more accurate. Using mobile technology also increases the number of people that Plantwise reaches, especially since the app works with intermittent internet, and can be viewed offline.

The Pest Alert service had 545 sign-ups from 200 countries, including 169 contacts from the National Plant Protection Organizations.

As of the end of December 2013, plant clinics were regularly collecting data in 14 countries, with over 18,000 records of visits by farmers. Local and national engagement continues to increase in 2014, with the current numbers in July being over 50 000 records collected from 23 countries.

It’s been a busy first half of 2014, and we’re already making good progress on figures for this year. Check out the knowledge bank site to see the content we’ve added recently!

 

Yours in losing less and feeding more,

The Plantwise knowledge bank

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 6,354 other followers