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Making soybean decisions

Plant early for best yield

Kim Fundingsland/MDN Hans Kandel, NDSU Extension Service, Fargo, gave a presentation on soybean production at a workshop sponsored by the North Dakota Grain Growers Association and the ND Wheat Commission Feb. 14 in Minot. Kandel encouraged farmers to “plant early.”

Plant early.

That was the advice from Hans Kandel, NDSU Extension Service, Fargo, during his recent presentation to interested soybean producers in Minot. Handel was taking part in a workshop sponsored by the North Dakota Grain Growers Association and the ND Wheat Commission that was held at the Clarion Hotel.

Kandel referred to 2019 as a drought year that impacted soybean growers and stated that “you don’t know what will happen this coming year.” However, said Kandel, the key to producing a good crop of soybeans is to plant early. That, of course, is sometimes easier said than done. The weather needs to cooperate.

“Look at the weather forecast and soil condition,” Kandel told attendees. “Know your soil.”

Kandel explained that the higher the salinity of the soil, the lower the yield when it comes to soybeans. He added that row spacing can be an important factor in yield too and reminded farmers that they should “expect to lose 10% of the plants they seed” because not all soybean seeds will germinate.

Maturity was listed by Kandel as the number one item when it comes to soybean production. By that he meant that as soybean maturity increases so does the yield, as much as one bushel per acre.

The average planting date for soybeans in North Dakota, said Kandel, is in May with the soybean planting season running anywhere from May 1 to June 1. He cautioned growers not to delay their planting, saying, “Delay planting and production goes down.”

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