Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Followup: Ground Truth

The phrase "ground truth" is used in many areas to describe the best possible data on a given topic.  That is, you've actually gone there and checked out the situation.  You've been on the ground, and found out the truth.  

You might remember the challenge to identify an image of a low hillside of trees.  

That was the search challenge from April 24th, 2013.  

Remember this image?  The questions were "what kind of trees are these?" and "why did I hear a bell ringing in the afternoon?" 

I happened to ride my bike past here earlier this week (June 16).  And this image pretty well provides ground truth for us.  You can see the apricots in the trees and all over the ground from windfalls.  

We don't always get ground truth in our business.  But sometimes, just sometimes, we do.  It's good to double check these things.  

(And now, because I'm a curious kind of guy, I look at this picture and wonder why there are NO weeds or grass here.  What's up with that?  I'm sure they disced the soil around the trees... but that's impressively weed-free.  Or are they using some kind of grass-specific herbicide?  Maybe an upcoming challenge?) 


  1. Thanks Dr. Russell for the update!

    I believe they do something similar like vineyards do. It is very interesting. That is a good challenge! I'll try it.

    Did you hear again the bell?

    Finally, and in other topic. Yesterday I was able to see "THE MEN WHO BUILT AMERICA" it is very interesting. I remebered Dr. Russell recommended some time another Tv Show about history and good sources for research. That is why I post it here. Maybe some of you would like to see this TV Series too. Here the link. http://www.history.com/shows/men-who-built-america

    Have a nice day.

  2. I'm guessing this is mostly a water conservation driven effort? - were there wells with a drip system at each tree? Often, if the crop is heavy, the fruit will be thinned for more desirable product. If there is that much wind, bare soil is subject to erosion and bare soil temps can be higher which can have an adverse effect - unintended consequences. Was it that clean all the way to the fence? I suppose there is an outside chance it is tied into reducing fire risk too? Have you placed your order for some dried 'cots yet?

    Thanks for clearing up ground truth - I was thinking it was akin to minced, powdered or mulled truths - additives used in judicious amounts to shape perception… good to know I won't have to shop for a truth grinder.

    pedal on - found this reading one of your commenter links, you might be interested…

  3. I searched for "starting up apricot farm" and "soil preparation for apricot farming"

    I quickly found a website (link at bottom if you want to learn more) that describes 'dry farming' an old method used for many years. It was likely first used Europe's vineyards. Some essential considerations are sufficient rainfall and ability to soak up the moisture. The soil is a surface sponge of 3/4 inches which contributes to reduced weeds. Here's some other benefits listed-

    Additional Benefits
    The “dust mulch” (i.e., the dry layer of soil that is cultivated to trap moisture) is dry enough that few weeds grow, so herbicides are unnecessary, or, for organic farmers, little weeding is required.
    Less water used on crops will have positive impacts on water quality and in-stream flows.
    The energy used to transport and pump irrigation water is eliminated.
    Establishment and maintenance of drip irrigation systems are eliminated.
    Better tasting, more densely nutritious products.
    There are references and links at the bottom of website including a video(I couldn't view on my tablet)
    I think this may explain the weed free farm.

    Did you know that the scanned letters we need to input to prove we are not robots were invented by Luis van Ahn.? We are tranlating 500,000 words per day with free labor by doing so. This will translate thousands of books to online. He also invented Duolingo a free online language learning program allowing us to learn up to six languages and we reciprocate by translating foreign language websites into english. Just a little tidbid to add to your day.