Grown Here at Home: Program helps farmers learn how to use smartphones on farms

Updated: Oct. 9, 2023 at 5:00 AM EDT
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MONTGOMERY CO., Va. (WDBJ) - As technology for farmers advances, some might not realize the use they can get out of the technology in their back pockets – their smartphones.

Smartphones for Smart Farmers is a program geared toward the farmer who has a phone, but needs help getting the basics down. The average farmer is 58 years old, and some may not realize how helpful using their smartphone can be on the farm.

“It’s really great for record keeping, taking pictures, and timestamping when you might be moving livestock into a new pasture, so you know what rotation you’re on. If you have a piece of equipment that breaks down, you can use the video camera to go up and see what might be going on, or take pictures of serial numbers for parts, things like that,” said Montgomery County Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Agent Meredith Hoggatt.

Meredith says her dad inspired her to start the program. He’s a farmer in Draper. After learning all he could do with his phone on the farm, he changed his mind about using it.

“He’s been injured before and he says it’s great to have it out in the field, because, things can happen. He says it’s nice knowing that someone could be able to find you if something happened,” she explained.

The first session of Smartphones for Smart Farmers is Thursday, October 19, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.., at the Montgomery County Government Center, located at 755 Roanoke Street, in Christiansburg. To register, contact Meredith at 540-382-5790 or The deadline to register is October 17.