Soybean aphids (Aphis glycines Matsumara) are a piercing and sucking insect that have been affecting soybeans in the U.S. since the early 2000s. Aphids tend to be a problem in late-planted soybean fields during years with dry conditions and moderate temperatures. The insects themselves are small (1/16 in. long), pear-shaped, and yellow-to-green in color. They have black extensions on the body toward the back legs that are often called “tailpipes.” Winds deposit aphids in fields, so the infestation works from the top of the plant to the bottom. Aphids are most damaging in dry field conditions but shy away from heat, so look for them on the underside of leaves.
Categories: Agronomy, Agronomy Talk
Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) in the United States was first observed in 1954 in North Carolina, and it has continued to spread throughout most of the major soybean growing areas (Tylka and Marett 2014). The expansion of SCN across the U.S. and Canada is depicted in in Figure 1. to the left. It is the most damaging pest in soybeans by a large margin.
Twenty years of Beck’s Practical Farm Research (PFR)® data indicates that one key to optimizing soybean yield over time is early planting. Early planting of soybeans increases the number of nodes, which creates additional pods and higher yield.
Top priorities for prevent plant (PP) acres in the spring include; tiling, tillage, residue, cover crops, weeds, nutrients, soil health, and insects.
Frogeye leaf spot (FLS), caused by the pathogen Cercospora sojina, is a common soybean foliar disease of many soybean-producing regions worldwide. In the U.S., the disease is established in southern production regions and has recently become prevalent in the Midwest and Upper Midwest. It’s believed that the range expansion and increased disease severity are caused by widespread planting of susceptible varieties, warmer winter temperatures, and the increased adoption of conservation tillage practices, which, together, lead to increased inoculum levels. FLS does not always cause yield loss, but yield loss of up to 60% has been reported with severe infection rates.
Tags: soybeans, Fungicide, frogeye leaf spot, foliar disease, soybean disease, Leaf Lesions
As farming becomes more complex and time becomes more precious, farmers are searching for ways to increase revenue and manage input costs on every acre. This leads us to ask, what soybean management practices can save you time, make the most sense agronomically, and make you money?
Manganese (Mn) is important in a soybean plant for its role in the activation of enzymes and in the process of photosynthesis. Additionally, Mn is known to regulate potassium (K) uptake.
We know that different nutrients are required at different times for optimum soybean yields. Current soybean biomass production shows a two-fold increase from the 1930s, and yields show a three-fold increase. With these drastic changes in genetics, it only makes sense that we would also see changes in nutrient uptake. In addition to genetics, there is evidence that environmental factors like temperature, moisture, and soil fertility influence nutrient uptake.
In corn-after-corn systems, the high amount of residue can immobilize nitrogen and make it unavailable to the following crop. Robust® and Res Plus are products the help to feed microorganisms in the soil. By supporting microbial communities, these products lead, in turn, to increased microbial degradation of corn residue in corn-after-corn systems. Applying these products in the fall may help speed up residue breakdown so the carbon penalty is paid off earlier in the growing season. This would allow for a transition from immobilization to mineralization of residue-bound nitrogen (N).
Nitrogen (N) is a mobile nutrient. When we look at the N cycle, we think of NO3 - is the N form most readily taken up by the plant, followed by NH4 +. Loss of N when applying urea or UAN can occur as ammonia volatilization (lost in gaseous form). In the case of UAN applications, N loss can also occur in the form of NO3 - leaching if a heavy rain follows or denitrification. Two ways to prevent N loss are more accurate timing and more precise placement. If we can supply N to the plant when it needs it, this allows less time for N loss. If we supply N near the base of the plant where it can more easily access the nutrient, this could increase N use efficiency.
When it comes to insecticides in corn and soybeans, it's important to remember that different pests are present at different points in the season. Whether or not an insecticide is warranted can be determined by a few factors. What insects are present? Does this field have a history of a particular insect pest? Are these insects present at a level that will impact your yield and ROI?
Fungicides are used in corn for a number of reasons. First and foremost, they can prevent or mitigate disease. How a fungicide works will depend on its mode of action. In addition to controlling disease, fungicides also work to increase water use efficiency in the plant, photosynthesis, nitrate reductase activity, timing for ear fill, and stress tolerance. One way to increase this stress tolerance is through the mitigation of ethylene production.
Nitrogen (N) is a critical input for a corn crop’s success. It is also one of the more challenging inputs to manage as every year brings a different set of environmental conditions that can change the response to different forms, timing, and placement of N on your farm. Researching N is equally challenging because so many external factors can impact the results. That’s why multi-year and multi-location data are key components to gaining a deeper understanding of N results. Through Beck’s PFR, we will continue to evaluate different timing and placement methods as we strive to help solve the puzzle that is N management.
For many years, research has been conducted on starter fertilizers and placement, either in the row or near the row. The visual observations of the response to a starter often do not necessarily match up with the data at the end of the season. As we continue to learn and develop new products and application technologies, the results seem to be more promising and the responses more consistent. Beck's PFR continues to investigate some of the new application technologies and products that may provide a benefit.
We know that micronutrients such as zinc (Zn), manganese (Mn), and boron (B) are important for the growth and development of a corn plant. These nutrients are especially important at grain fill, as shown below. While timing is key, we also know that plants only require approximately 0.6 lb. of both Zn and B to produce a 220 Bu./A. corn crop, so foliar applications could potentially supply an adequate amount.
Anthracnose is a common fungal disease in most corn production areas of the United States. These symptoms are caused by the fungus Colletotrichum graminicola. This fungus can cause many issues in corn including early- and mid-season leaf blight, top dieback, and stalk rots. In severe cases, these diseases can lead to premature death of infected plants, stalk lodging and reduced harvestability, and loss of grain yield.
Corn grain yield, typically measured in bushels per acre, can be broken down into distinct components that each contribute to the weight of harvested grain. While genetics govern some yield components, much of the harvested yield is directly affected by environmental conditions and management practices. Yield components include number of plants per acre, number of ears per plant, the number of kernels per ear, and the weight of each kernel.
Rapid Growth Syndrome (RGS) can result in some unsightly plants, but it is of little concern when it comes to plant health and yield. Symptoms include leaves twisted in the whorl that have a wrinkled appearance, followed by bright yellow new leaves. Affected plants are distributed at random throughout the field.
Non-GMO corn production requires additional management considerations, particularly in areas with strong insect
pressure. With careful planning, scouting, and season-long management, non-GMO corn production can be successful.
European corn borer (ECB) (Ostrinia nubilalis [Hubner]) was introduced to the eastern United States in 1917 and quickly became an economically important pest of the Corn Belt. With the introduction of transgenic Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) corn in 1996, damage from this pest has been mitigated.