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May freeze threatens soybean acres

Source: Wikimedia Commons

Freeze settled on crop ground throughout the Corn Belt this past weekend. What toll did it have on corn and soybeans?

Nicole Stecklein, DEKALB Asgrow technical agronomist in southeast Iowa, says the impact of recent frost is “still up in the air.” Stecklein does not seem too worried about corn, as the growing point typically remains below ground until V5 to V6. However, she does have reason for concern when it comes to emerged soybeans.

“I’m most concerned about soybean acres. When a soybean is coming up, the growing point is the first thing out of the ground,” Stecklein said. “So it depends on when they were planted. There’s not a whole lot out, but there are some. They don’t look healthy at this moment.”

Farmers can expect to see damage to soybeans in low-lying acres without a lot of residue cover. However, “it is going to be variable across the field and within the rows,” according to Stecklein. She encourages growers to give the plant a couple of days, to see whether it is going to survive or not.

“We need to go out, do stand counts, and determine which ones are going to survive,” Stecklein said. “At this stage in the game, I can live with a stand count on soybeans between 80- and 90,000, if it’s fairly consistent. If you’re going to have a lot of dead spots, inconsistencies in residue cover, then you’re going to have to look at that. Make sure you aren’t going to have a lot of bare spots because that’s going to dig into our yield potential, as well as give us challenges on weed control.”

Farmers having to replant soybeans need to get in touch with their crop insurance agent and ensure seed.

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