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Di@gnoPlant®: diagnostic advice on crop diseases via a smartphone

In order to reduce the use of plant health products on crops, the early and reliable identification of a disease, and the detection of emergent pests, have been proved to be crucial stages in treatment.  In particular, they enable an alignment of the diagnosis with the most appropriate protection method(s).  An INRA research team in the Joint Research Unit for Vine Health and Agroecology (SAVE) in Bordeaux has developed Di@gnoPlant®, which supplies several plant protection applications for smartphones and tablets that can identify and localise diseases in the field.

application   SMARTPHONE. © inra
Updated on 02/08/2013
Published on 12/19/2012

At the onset of symptoms on a crop or in a garden, a farmer, technician or gardener can now gain access via a smartphone or tablet to INRA's wide-ranging knowledge and expertise in plant protection.  Each Di@gnoPlant tool is able to:

  • Identify diseases on a given crop thanks to an image identification module, depending on the type of symptoms, signs or pests observed;
  • Provide a user with information on the characteristics of these diseases, based on an INRA database organised in the form of datasheets which detail the symptoms and biology of the pest incriminated and protection methods optimised to the parasitic context.

During this project, the aim of the scientists was to build a continuum of diagnostic/advice tools accessible over the internet thanks to e-phytia, and also in the field using the new information and communication opportunities provided by smartphones and tablets.  Thus a user can make a direct diagnosis in the field, or even take photos of the symptoms and send them to a specialist unit for confirmation.  Several interactive Di@gnoPlant applications are now available on Apple or Android platforms, and can identify diseases affecting salads, tomato, vine and tobacco.  Other applications currently under development will target vegetables (aubergine, sweet pepper, melon, courgette, cucumber, etc.) and other crops.
In the near future, a new geolocation module for diseases – called VigiPl@ant – will be available, and it will be possible to couple it (or not) to the Di@gnoPlant® applications.  This will facilitate the epidemiological surveillance of pests in a particular region and contribute to detecting emergent pests.  Using a smartphone, an observer will be able to report the presence of a pest in a geolocalised crop, together with data on the parasitic context (type of crop, variety affected, disease incidence, etc.).  The parasite pressure concerning one or more diseases will also be available in a given production region.  Finally, versions in other languages of several Di@gnoPlant® applications are currently in preparation.

Scientific contact(s):

Associated Division(s):
Plant Health and Environment
Associated Centre(s):