In-Season Agronomy

Enhancing the Profitability of Wheat-Soybean Double Cropping

Double cropping soybeans after winter wheat is an attractive approach to enhancing profitability in Midwest crop rotations and improving soil health. To capitalize on this cropping system, this project will identify high-yielding winter wheat varieties that can be harvested earlier and enable earlier planting of double-crop soybeans to maximize soybean yield potential.

Project Information

  • When do winter wheat varieties suited to Illinois break winter dormancy?
  • When do they reach maturity, or 14% grain moisture, and are ready for harvest?
  • What are average yield expectations?
  • St. Peter; Urbana; Neoga; Addieville; Belleville
  • Winter wheat continues to gain attention as a tool to break up the soybean-corn rotation cycle, improve soil health and add another profit stream.
  • To maximize the profitability of a wheat-soybean double-crop system, it’s important to find high-yielding winter wheat varieties that can be harvested earlier so that soybeans can be planted at a time that is more favorable for yield development.
  • Currently data about winter wheat varieties don’t sufficiently indicate timing of key developmental stages, such as winter dormancy release and the target 14% grain moisture.
  • With more data about available and experimental winter wheat varieties, Illinois’ farmers can make more informed decisions about which varieties to incorporate into a double-crop rotation.
  • Knowing when varieties break winter dormancy helps farmers choose varieties that would avoid damage from spring freezes.
  • Knowing when varieties reach the targeted 14% grain moisture to be able to harvest allows farmers to select and plant appropriate double-crop soybean maturity group varieties that can reach maturity before fall freezes.
  • Luis Gehrke, Research Specialist, UIUC
  • Tadele Kamssa, Research Specialist, UIUC
  • Sophia Arista, Master’s Student, UIUC

About the Lead Researcher

Dr. Jessica Rutkoski
Assistant Professor
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)

Are you a farmer or advisor?

If you’re a farmer or advisor, we invite you to take our Soybean Production Concerns Survey linked below to help guide future ISA research efforts. We also encourage you to contact us below with specific production challenge research ideas.

Are you a researcher?

If you’re a researcher interested in working with ISA on a project, we encourage you to contact us with your ideas. The RFP will open in early March. Contact us below to be added to the mailing list for more information.