digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes
digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes
jul 05, 2013

digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes

‘avena+ test bed’: agricultural printing + altered landscapes by benedikt groß
all images courtesy benedikt groß



with the arrival of precision farming in industrial production, agriculture has the ability to become strategically mapped, transforming traditional farming methods into a highly digital-reliant activity. in combination with other environmental and landscape changes in the countryside– mainly the paradigm shift from food to biogas production, the process will lead to disruptive changes within the next few years for the european countryside. as a response, london-based interaction designer benedikt groß has developed the ‘avena+ test bed’, a masters thesis at the RCA that explores the relationship between landscape, agriculture and digital fabrication.




avena+ test bed: agricultural printing + altered landscapes
video courtesy benedikt groß



the project uses the idea of ‘agricultural printing’ to investigate the possibilities of digital fabrication and its application into modern farming. the experiment applies algorithms to partition and to create an environmentally beneficial model for standardized biomass/energy production fields. these additional areas establish and improve the connectivity for fauna and flora between habitats, increasing diversity to ease typical problems of mono-cultures ( ex. less vermin results in reduced usage of pesticides.) in the near future a farmer might not just produce oats, peas, beans and barley, but also print ‘environment compensations areas’ into his fields without contaminating existing crops and thriving habitats. by the end of july 2013, the ‘avena+ test bed’ will be harvested to produce bio gas.



digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes
circumference of the plot of land is recorded on site using GPS coordinates





85% oats (avena sativa) 
15% eleven different flowers and herbs




11.5 hectares (320 m x 920 m) in unterwaldhausen, south germany 



digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes

external GPS/GLONASS reference station for maximum accuracy



digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes

harvest results – image from july 2013



digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes

‘seam’ between oats and flowers (mid of may 2013)



digitally farming with agricultural printing + altered landscapes

site mapping plan



project information:


supported by: maximilian erbgraf zu königsegg-aulendorf, maximilian count of königsegg-aulendorf
administrator: hubert geser
project engineer:lorenz riegger
advisor: roland groß
tractor driver: stefan riegger 
farming contractor: lu peter boos 
agricultural advisor: norbert menz, prof. dr. klaus schmieder, prof. dr. martin dieterich
aerial footage: florian vögtle 
pilot: hermann benkler
agricultural machinery: agco, massey ferguson, horsch maschinen gmbh, agrom agrar- und kommunaltechnik gmbh

  • we are desperate to find a good use for voronoi patterns, aren’t we?

    sean says:
  • Don’t they have anything else to do?

    Ron Smith says:
  • What is digital here? And what is printing?

    Petre says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

comments policy
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

technology news

keep up with our daily and weekly stories
504,283 subscribers
- see sample
- see sample
designboom magazine