Röhren- und Pumpenwerk BAUER > Testimonials > SmartRain for 36 Rainstars
East Riding of Yorkshire in UK

Happy carrots – smart irrigation in Yorkshire

Irrigation in England? That’s right. After all, sandy soils dry quickly and benefit from the assistance of “SmartRain”.

“Home of the happy carrot!” is the motto of MH Poskitt Ltd, a family-owned agricultural enterprise in East Riding of Yorkshire that grows an impressive 50,000 tons of carrots and 9,000 tons of parsnips per year. Poskitts begins with “Green Top” carrots from July through December, whilst many of the “happy” orange veggies remain in the ground, covered with straw, to be harvested from late December through until May, allowing for fresh harvests year-round. Root vegetables for leading supermarkets make up the company’s core business. Carrots are cultivated on 600 hectares, with parsnips and potatoes accounting for another 240 hectares each. These are supplemented by other crops as well, including 500,000 pumpkins – largely for Halloween!

Irrigation is a key factor for good harvests

Rainstars for sandy soils

England is an example of how irrigation can be important even in rainy climates. For example, the potato fields of Poskitts are situated on very sandy soils that dry out quickly. “The potatoes are planted in March and are then irrigated from early April onwards,” explains farm manager James Thorpe. If the plants don’t get enough water at this stage, the yields remain small.

Even in England, irrigation is a key factor for good harvests and consistent quality, making it no surprise that Poskitts has been using Bauer Rainstars for 30 years now. The vegetable fields of Yorkshire are home to 36 of these irrigation systems, which were upgraded five years ago with the SmartRain app.

Bauer_Team_Poskitt_John Milner_James Thorpe_Adrian_Rob
Full control over 36 machines

Even at a distance of up to 65 kilometers

With SmartRain, farm manager James Thorpe (2nd from left with John Milner (left, Rainmec), Adrian Tindall and Rob Jackson (3rd and 4th from left, both the Bauer Group)) has full control over all 36 machines even at a distance of up to 65 kilometers. The Rainstars are controlled in teams of five to eight machines. The data provided by the app enables detailed planning of the irrigation as well as the necessary reports for environmental authorities.

The team managers are generally about 16 kilometers away from the Rainstars. Some of the irrigated fields are as far as 65 kilometers away from the home farm. But the systems can be monitored and controlled from any distance – even while on holiday!

SmartRain can also be easily installed on older devices. The two oldest Rainstars at Poskitts are 20 years old. The Rainstars only need an energy-independent GPS module for SmartRain to work.

Soil moisture data is currently collected manually. In the future, it could be integrated directly into the SmartRain system using a weather station.