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Planting Strategies

Using Harvest Aids/Desiccants in Soybeans

Soybean desiccation Soybean desiccation is not a new tool in other parts of the country, it has just not been used in Illinois with any frequency. In the past, harvest aids have been used to remedy problems that interfered with efficient soybean harvest e.g., green stems or excessive weeds. What is new is that more farmers are looking to desiccation in combination with earlier planting for an earlier harvest and reduced harvest loss and foreign materials (FM) that can lead to dockage. The potential yield advantage with earlier planting has been well-documented and 2021 saw many growers planting a [...]

By |October 4, 2021|

PODCAST: The Value of Planting Soybeans Early

CCA Soy Envoy Randy Niver joins the podcast this month to discuss why planting soybeans earlier in the spring supports higher yields at harvest. He also shares why it is important to protect the canopy throughout the growing season and ways to manage specific diseases. Listen to learn more. ILSoyAdvisor Podcasts · The Value of Planting Soybeans Early

By |August 24, 2021|

2021 Scouting Report

Early season April - June Although I would love to be everywhere at once, a lot of my scouting for the 2021 season has been focused throughout Illinois stretching from Princeton to Altamont. This season I was able to make a trip down to Carbondale and was able to see fields of double crop beans coming up July 9. And I always make a trip up north to my favorite fields in Stockton at least twice a year, once in April and again September. Cover crop mix, picture Dec. 16, 2020. Stockton, IL field day April 2, 2021 at [...]

By |August 23, 2021|

Understanding the Road Map of Soybean Reproduction

Planting soybeans can sometimes be simple, however growing soybeans can be challenging, and growing 100 bu soybeans consistently can be very challenging. Over the last 10 years, there have been major leaps forward in improving soybean genetics and agronomic practices. I always challenge growers to be a student of their fields and that if they are listening, their fields are telling them what’s wrong, but only if we’re willing to listen. As a soybean producer, it’s important to evaluate what you’re seeing or not seeing in a particular field and start asking the question of why. As most know, [...]

By |August 12, 2021|

Don’t Give Up – Manage to R7

The reproductive stages of the soybean plant are focused on producing high pod counts and, more importantly, preserving as many as possible. During this time, a soybean plant is trying to balance its hormones and determine what number of pods and seeds it can successfully feed and finish. Stress (disease, nutritional, insect, water, or heat) during these stages can cause the plant to eliminate pods and seeds. High-yielding corn growers and agronomists say, “manage to black layer.” This means, don’t give up on a crop until it’s done. I have documented that when a corn plant reaches ¾ milk [...]

By |August 12, 2021|

Strong Starts Need Stronger Treatments

When it comes to starting off the growing season strong, seed treatments are key. According to Dale Ireland, they are one of the most important inputs for higher yield. Ireland, Technical Product Lead of Seedcard for Syngenta, says that growers can plant a great seed such as a fantastic hybrid or variety, but if it's planted with an inadequate or no seed treatment, a good deal of yield may be lost within the first few weeks of the growing season due to loss of plant stand. "The biggest benefit of using a seed treatment is a greater number of [...]

By |August 6, 2021|

Evaluating Early Planting Soybean

Planting a crop can be an emotional roller coaster for a farmer, besides selling grain too soon. My grandfather would say “put your bare bottom” on the soil and if you cringe, it’s too cold and too early to plant. Based off how often I heard this same story this past spring, the generation prior to us was definitely one of the greatest. The last three springs have brought up a lot of debate on when we should or should not be planting. In general, a soybean plant can withstand early season challenges better than a corn plant. And [...]

By |July 26, 2021|

Proper Soybean Staging and Implications for Management

Illinois grows the most bushels of soybeans of any state in the United States. The varieties we typically grow here are called “indeterminate” which means their pattern of growth can change as the season and conditions allow year to year. Staging soybeans is an important aspect to managing a healthy crop because many of our crop protection products have specific usage windows. Let’s walk through the stages and discuss crop protection considerations at each growth stage. Preplant – This one is pretty self-explanatory. Preplant is the term used to describe a field of soybeans that has yet to be [...]

By |July 21, 2021|

Moisture Saturation and Oxygen Depravation

Many parts of the Central Illinois region have been hit with multiple inches of rain, causing several ponding issues. One observation we can easily see is when there is water on the surface. What is harder to see, and to realize, is when a field is fully saturated, but not showing water on the surface. Here’s an example. I was walking a field in early July, and it was certainly wet enough to require me to throw on my muck boots. The field was showing symptoms of water damage, but no standing water was present.  As I walked out [...]

By |July 21, 2021|

Diary of a Soybean – Entry 2

Hello again, it’s Max the soybean. If you remember, my siblings and I were planted on March 10 and had come through some pretty harsh conditions. Last time we spoke, there was some doubt as to whether or not we would survive the hard freeze we had just been through where the temperature dropped as low as 26°F over the previous couple of nights. As you can see in this picture, we were plenty cold and covered with ice crystals. The next few days were pretty dicey. None of us came through unscathed. For most of us, our cotyledons [...]

By |July 1, 2021|
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