When weighing your crops, it is important to distinguish between dry weight and fresh weight, as these numbers can be rather different from one another.
Fresh weight is defined as the weight recorded immediately when the product is harvested and includes the water content present in the product. Fresh weight can be useful when evaluating yield results before selling our product. Growers usually get paid for the weight of fresh produce, which is the main reason why fresh weight is usually the variable measured when evaluating crop results. However, fresh weight includes water content in the product at the harvest time, and water content after harvest can change due to time or environmental conditions. This is why, when evaluating harvest using fresh weight, we need to take measurements as soon as we harvest the product. Otherwise, we can get inconsistent data.
Dry weight, on the other hand, is defined as the weight recorded after drying plant tissue at temperatures higher than ambient temperature, which eliminates water from the plant. Dry weight can be a useful and reliable tool when looking to evaluate crop performance, especially after applying any treatments looking to improve yield or quality. Dry weight will provide a precise measurement of biomass eliminating fluctuations caused by water content. Plant total biomass can be directly related to our plant performance as a response to photosynthetic capacity, nutrition, environmental conditions, and more. This is why dry weight will be the best option to record weight when evaluating treatments or any special management inside our systems looking to improve yield or quality.
Watch a video on the difference between fresh weight and dry weight below.
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