by Dr. Ronnie Levy, Soybean Specialist
Soybean planting got an early start this year with most acres planted mid-April through the first part of May. The picture taken June 26th shows one of the soybean varieties in the Official Variety Test at Dean Lee Research and Extension Center in Alexandria. While most areas were planted early, we are still planting soybeans behind wheat and crawfish ponds. There is talk of planting soybeans after early corn harvest in other states. Louisiana was projected to plant a little over a million acres of soybeans in 2012. As strong exports and demand for soybeans continue, soybean acres continued to increase throughout the planting season. The total acres planted will be limited by dry conditions is some areas and prevented in others, but overall planting could be as high as 1.25 million soybean acres.
Insect and disease control are always a concern in Louisiana. Due to numerous insects and diseases that attack soybeans, proper timing of insecticides and fungicides is a must. Scout fields weekly and treat when thresholds are reached. After treating, check results and retreat as needed. Soybean seed quality at harvest is a result of proper timing of insecticides and fungicides. Insects and diseases can reduce photosynthate production, cause pod abortion, and/or plant death. While environmental conditions at harvest affect quality, insect feeding on pods can compromise the integrity of the pods providing sites for disease and moisture to attack the developing seed.
For more information, contact me at my New Cell Number: 318-542-8857 or your local County Agent Office.