Satellite image processing of the Buxus hyrcana Pojark dieback in the Northern Forests of Iran

Ghavidel M., Bayat P., Farashiani M.E. (2021): Satellite image processing of the Buxus hyrcana Pojark dieback in the Northern Forests of Iran. J. For. Sci., 67: 7179.

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Pests and diseases can cause a variety of reactions in plants. In recent years, the boxwood dieback has become one of the essential concerns of practitioners and natural resources managers in Iran. To control the boxwood dieback spread, the early detection and disease distribution maps are required. The boxwood dieback causes a range of changes in colour, shape and leaf size with respect to photosynthesis and transpiration. Through remote sensing techniques, e.g. satellite image processing data, the variation of thermal and visual characteristics of the plant could be used to measure and illustrate the symptoms of the disease. In this study, five common vegetation indices like difference vegetation index (DVI), normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), soil adjusted vegetation index (SAVI), simple ratio (SR), and plant health index (PHI) were extracted and calculated from Landsat 8 satellite image data from six regions in the Gilan province, located in the northern part of Iran out of 150 maps over the time period 2014‒2018. It turned out that among the aforementioned indices, based upon the results of the models, SR and NDVI indices were more useful for the disease spread, respectively. Our disease progression model fitting criteria showed that this technique could probably be used to assess the extent of the affected areas and also the disease progression in the investigated regions in future.

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