Updated horticultural research software will be available by end of the year

A new version of the MORPH software will be available by the end of the year, researchers at Warwick HRI have revealed.

MORPH, which stands for Methods of Research Practice in Horticulture, is the framework that supports the models developed by the university to help growers and agronomists manage their crops.

These models include those that can forecast pest and disease outbreaks or crop maturity. MORPH processes the models' results as tables, spreadsheets and graphs.

Warwick HRI researchers have consulted with MORPH users - asking them what they think about the look and feel of the software and the kind of problems they use MORPH to anticipate and counteract - to help them develop the new package.

Agronomist Jane Fellows, speaking at the HDC's Vegetable Technology Day last week, said: "We have had a lot of consultation with industry during the development stage ... there's been quite a lot of brainstorming and prototyping."

She added that part of the research team is based at Glasgow Caledonian University. There, PhD student Caroline Park has observed agronomists at work - watching when and where they required data and how they acquired it.

During summer 2006, she conducted five company observation and shadowing sessions for salads, alliums and carrot sectors.

Fellows said: "All of this data has been used to see how this new MORPH5 could be delivered.

"We realise that people want to turn on their PCs in the morning and find out what they need to look at, what they might need to look at, and what they can say is OK."

She revealed that the design-and-build process for the model is in progress, with "a lot of work going on to developing this graphical user interface".

She said: "Things are really happening. It will not be long now."

The latest version of the current model, MORPH4, was released in March 2006. Defra is funding the development of MORPH5.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

How will reduced apple and pear harvests hit the industry?

How will reduced apple and pear harvests hit the industry?

This spring, many top-fruit growers in the UK and across Europe were dismayed to discover that swathes of their orchards had been hit by frost.

How should fruit growers prepare for water abstraction reform?

How should fruit growers prepare for water abstraction reform?

Upcoming reforms to water abstraction licensing will for the first time cap the amount of water that fruit growers can take for trickle irrigation.

Getting a measure of the production labour crisis

Getting a measure of the production labour crisis

At a debate during last week's Fruit Focus trade show in Kent, senior industry figures painted a bleak picture of an increasingly difficult seasonal labour market that is already impacting on investment.