Augmentation of Vegetation Index Curves Considering the Crop-Specific Phenological Characteristics

Arun P. V., Arnon Karnieli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The state-of-the-art crop phenological classifiers use vegetation index (VI) time-series data and deep learning (DL) techniques. However, the scarcity of training samples limits the performance of these approaches. Unlike the conventional augmentation techniques, the data augmentation of VI curves should preserve the crop-specific phenological events. The DL-based augmentation approaches do not give good results when the training samples are limited. Also, the conventional approaches such as translation, rotation, scaling, and wrapping do not preserve the characteristic features of the index curves, thereby making them inappropriate for the VI-curve-based augmentations. This article proposes a non-DL-based data augmentation strategy that requires only a minimal number of actual training samples. In the proposed approach, the periodic phenological events and the underlying trend for each crop class are modeled to improve the augmentation. The trends of different crop classes are estimated by jointly maximizing the autocorrelation and variance, while the optimal subsequences are generalized as the phenological events. The proposed augmentation strategy of using Maximal overlap discrete wavelet transform for obtaining the surrogates that retain the crop-specific features and periodicities significantly improves the results. It may be noted that the proposed approach does not alter the wavelet coefficients that are characteristics of a given crop class. The experiments using time series VI data, covering 90 fields of wheat, and 60 fields of barley, confirm better accuracy of the proposed augmentation approaches as compared to the prominent approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1235-1243
Number of pages9
JournalIEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2022


  • Crops
  • Generative adversarial networks
  • Indexes
  • Market research
  • Time series analysis
  • Training
  • Vegetation mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computers in Earth Sciences
  • Atmospheric Science


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