Using NDVI and guided sampling to develop yield prediction maps of processing tomato crop

Rafael Fortes, María del Henar Prieto, Abelardo García-Martín, Antón Córdoba, Laura Martínez, Carlos Campillo


The use of yield prediction maps is an important tool for the delineation of within-field management zones. Vegetation indices based on crop reflectance are of potential use in the attainment of this objective. There are different types of vegetation indices based on crop reflectance, the most commonly used of which is the NDVI (normalized difference vegetation index). NDVI values are reported to have good correlation with several vegetation parameters including the ability to predict yield. The field research was conducted in two commercial farms of processing tomato crop, Cantillana and Enviciados. An NDVI prediction map developed through ordinary kriging technique was used for guided sampling of processing tomato yield. Yield was studied and related with NDVI, and finally a prediction map of crop yield for the entire plot was generated using two geostatistical methodologies (ordinary and regression kriging). Finally, a comparison was made between the yield obtained at validation points and the yield values according to the prediction maps. The most precise yield maps were obtained with the regression kriging methodology with RRMSE values of 14% and 17% in Cantillana and Enviciados, respectively, using the NDVI as predictor. The coefficient of correlation between NDVI and yield was correlated in the point samples taken in the two locations, with values of 0.71 and 0.67 in Cantillana and Enviciados, respectively. The results suggest that the use of a massive sampling parameter such as NDVI is a good indicator of the distribution of within-field yield variation.


Solanum lycopersicum; ordinary kriging; regression kriging; vegetation index; precision agriculture

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DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2015131-6532