Staying on top of all the latest ag technology, field data and research can be overwhelming. That’s why the Soybean Research & Information Initiative, formerly the Plant Health Initiative, continually provides you with access to expert information and news about soybean pests, diseases, and agronomics. The aim of this check off-funded website is to communicate the on-going progress and current understanding coming from your active and wide-ranging U.S. soybean research programs. Please visit often!


Mon, Sept 11, 2017
New Guidance on Micronutrients for Soybean Production
by Antonio Mallarino, Research and Extension agronomist,Iowa State University

A new resource is available for farmers and crop advisors in the North Central region regarding micronutrient use in soybean production.

It is the first regional publication with a thorough discussion of micronutrient needs for soybean, based on information compiled from response-based field studies throughout the North Central region.

It also includes a thorough discussion on the value of soil and plant tissue analyses to determine micronutrient needs.   Read more...
Fri, Sept 8, 2017
What’s Bugging Soybeans?
An interview with Erin Hodgson, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach entomologist,by Matthew Wilde, senior writer, Iowa Soybean Association

After bloom, soybean pest activity varies greatly from soybean aphids to numerous types of beetles — bean leaf beetle, Japanese beetle, flea beetles and more. There are also several caterpillars that feed on soybeans, including green cloverworm, soybean looper and thistle caterpillar.

“I’ve seen all these in soybeans this summer, plus a lot of other incidental pests,” Hodgson said. “Soybeans can typically handle quite a bit of leaf defoliation, so we should be paying attention to those pests that feed on the pod and seeds.”   Read more...
Fri, Aug 25, 2017
Assessing Causes of Soybean Yield Gaps in the North-Central Region of the U.S.
by Patricio Grassini, Cropping System Extension Specialist, University of Nebraska, and Shawn Conley, Soybean and Wheat Extension Specialist, University of Wisconsin

In the latest issue of the journal Agricultural & Forest Meteorology, we report on a novel approach to assess yield gaps (the difference between maximum yield potential and measured producer yields) in soybean in the north-central region of the U.S.   Read more...
Wed, Aug 16, 2017
Charcoal Rot: A Hidden Threat to Soybean Yield
The persistent hot weather in many areas of the country this growing season may be conducive to the development of charcoal rot disease in soybean.

Farmers, agronomists, crop consultants and specialists are encouraged to scout for this particular disease now. Although charcoal rot is most severe in years and areas experiencing hot, dry weather, this disease can also cause losses when ample moisture is present, making it a hidden threat to yield.   Read more...
Tue, July 18, 2017
Update on Breeding for Soybean Aphid Resistance
by Brian Diers, Soybean Breeder, University of Illinois

The soybean aphid can be controlled by Rag genes (Resistance to Aphis glycine) which have been introgressed into soybean lines adapted to Midwestern growing conditions.

Our soybean breeding program continues to develop and release soybean varieties with different combinations of Rag genes conferring aphid resistance. The University of Illinois has commercialized four soybean varieties with Rag2, one variety with Rag1, and one variety with Rag1 and Rag2 combined.   Read more...
Thu, June 15, 2017
Biology and Economics of Recommendations for Insecticide-Based Management of Soybean Aphid
By Robert Koch, Field Crop Entomologist, University of Minnesota

We conducted a review of what is known about soybean aphid — in particular, the potential effects on yield and cost-effective management for this pest.

We found that although crop and input prices have changed since the establishment of an economic threshold (ET) of 250 aphids per plant, no consistent economic gain can be found with a reduced ET for soybean aphid. This is because the ET is already set well below the aphid population level that can cause measurable yield loss.   Read more...
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