Original article ran in the May/June 2018 issue of the South Dakota Soybean Leader magazine.
Farmers work to increase yields, improve efficiency and perfect their management in the search for greater profitability. Soybean checkoff-supported research is an important component of improvement as scientists identify factors that can limit yield or cause management challenges.
Nearly every new farm implement, regardless of color or brand, is equipped with a precision technology capability. Whether it is auto-steer or remote sensing technology, precision agriculture technology and acceptance are expanding rapidly.
Like a South Dakota snowbird who heads south for the winter, soybeans love to soak up the sun. Capturing sunlight is one of the keys to high-yielding soybeans as the plants convert sunlight to chemical energy. Higher energy conversion means higher yields.
Farmers rely on the latest research to help them make important management decisions. Dozens of South Dakota soybean farmers generate relevant data by conducting independent research on their farms and the results are just a few clicks away.
Soybean yield isn’t the only thing farmers gather in the fall. Experts say it is also an excellent time to do soil testing as it can reveal valuable information about nutrients and the presence of yield-robbing pests.
Today, hundreds of South Dakota soybean growers double as citizen scientists, testing various products and farming practices in their own fields with the intent to increase yields, ward off pests and disease and improve overall profits.
Drought conditions have continued to spread across South Dakota over the past few weeks. The most recent drought monitor shows that more than 90 percent of state is experiencing abnormally dry conditions and drought. In the Best Bean Practices videos below Paul Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator, shares more about weed management in dry conditions.
Proper crop scouting provides invaluable information farmers can use to make informed decisions to protect yield and quality in their fields. Getting that information requires a plan for how and when to monitor your fields.