There are some factors that influence soybean yield far more than others, for example a healthy crop rotation is going to do far more to help the crop reach full potential than any amount of tillage. In this Soybean School episode, Horst Bohner, soybean specialist with Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, recaps the top four decisions you’ve got to make ahead of planting this year and explains the impact each has on yield potential of the soybean crop.
Watch more: See the entire Soybean School here!
It may seem like all you ever hear is about the importance of variety selection, but that’s because it really is the foundation of a great crop. As Bohner points out, there can be as much as a 10 bushel per acre difference in yield potential varieties. The hiccup, of course, is that you can’t just pick the top yielder according to a chart — it has to be the top yielder adapted for your area and soil type. Variety selection plays into point two: planting date. Bohner discusses in this episode how earlier is good, yes, but that there is an ideal planting date that depends largely on the variety you choose. Those growing soybeans in a one in two alternation are destined to never reach max yields, Bohner adds, as a one in three or even one in four rotation has, time and time again, shown to be the highest yielding rotation around. He notes that there’s no amount of other management you can tack on to a crop that can make up for a short rotation, so think long-term, he says.
That, plus a discussion on the role of tillage, below.
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