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!


Tue, Sept 6, 2016
Soybean Seed Treatments: Questions that Emerge When Soybean Plants Don’t
by Kiersten Wise, Soybean Plant Pathologist, Purdue University

As part of an on-going regional research project called Identification and Biology of Seedling Pathogens of Soybean, funded by the North Central Soybean Research Program and the United Soybean Board, we answer frequently-asked questions about soybean emergence and seed treatments in this new publication.   Read more...
Fri, Aug 26, 2016
An Integrated Approach to Enhance the Durability of SCN Resistance for Long-Term Strategic Management
by Brian Diers, Soybean Breeder, University of Illinois, and Thomas Baum, Soybean Nematologist, Iowa State University

Although SCN-resistant soybean varieties are available to minimize yield loss to soybean cyst nematode (SCN), over 90% of the varieties available to growers in the north-central United States have the soybean line PI 88788 as the genetic source of resistance. The effectiveness of PI 88788 resistance has decreased over time as nematodes have adapted to this type of resistance. Producers are faced with limited options for rotation once virulent SCN populations develop in their fields.

To provide farmers with effective and durable rotation schemes, we have identified seven genes from five soybean lines, including wild soybean (Glycine soja), and are using them to develop lines with new combinations of SCN resistance genes.   Read more...
Tue, July 26, 2016
Benchmarking Soybean Production Systems in the North-Central USA
by Patricio Grassini, Cropping System Extension Specialist, University of Nebraska, and Shawn Conley, Soybean and Wheat Extension Specialist, University of Wisconsin

From 2010-2014, the average soybean yield in the north-central region was 43 bushels/acre. Yet some producers can consistently attain soybean yields near or greater than 80 bushels/acre. In the first few months of a 3-year project, we have collected data from over 3,000 soybean fields in the region and are identifying key management factors that can be used by individual producers to increase soybean yield closer to the yield potential of their farms.   Read more...
Mon, July 18, 2016
Soybean Entomology in the North Central Region: Management and Outreach for New and Existing Pests
by Kelley Tilmon, Field Crop Entomologist, Ohio State University

Our interdisciplinary entomology and plant breeding team, comprised of 18 research and extension scientists in 12 states, has a long history of working together to solve insect problems of regional importance in soybean. This summer we are sampling for new and emerging pests such as stink bugs and thrips.

In our continuing work on soybean aphid, we have begun to backcross the aphid resistance genes Rag4 and Rag6 into the same MG group I and II backgrounds that we used to backcross Rag1, Rag2, and Rag3. The 2015 fall trap data predicted a small 2016 spring egg hatch and fewer aphids this summer.   Read more...
Thu, June 23, 2016
Breeding to Improve Resistance to Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) as a Means to Protect Yield
By Brian Diers, Soybean Breeder, University of Illinois

Planting the most resistant varieties available is the foundation of an SDS management program. Our work on genetic resistance to SDS has made good progress towards the goal of providing growers with soybean varieties with increasing SDS resistance.

At least 17 varieties and germplasm lines have been released. Mapped and confirmed genes are now being integrated into breeding programs through the use of marker-assisted selection, which should continue to increase the pace of developing SDS-resistant varieties.   Read more...
Mon, June 6, 2016
Predicting the Risk of Sclerotinia Stem Rot of Soybean
by Mehdi Kabbage and Damon Smith, Soybean Plant Pathologists, University of Wisconsin.
Sclerotinia stem rot (SSR), also called white mold, is a sporadic but yield-limiting disease in the north-central region. Specific weather conditions must be present at the time of soybean flowering -- if they are absent, then SSR is unlikely to occur. One of the objectives in our current work on Sclerotinia stem rot is to more clearly define the effect of weather and application timing on the efficacy of fungicides.   Read more...
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