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Northern Illinois Agriculture

University of Illinois Extension
Soybeans
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Will 2015 be as good as 2014?

Last week the Northern Illinois Crop Management Conference took place at Malta and featured a number of speakers and specialists who shared their expertise. Here are some of the takeaway comments that I garnered from Dr. Emerson Nafziger. He took a look back at 2014 and posed the question, is this as good as it gets? Despite high yields and record-high cr...

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Princeton Ag Expo

Illinois Variety Testing corn and soybean yield results available

After a brief respite with warmer but wetter weather over the weekend it appears that northern Illinois is returning to below average temperatures, essentially putting an end to fall activities including soil testing and tillage. While we are still in the process of tabulating and double checking our yield data from the research farm for 2014, available now are corn and soybean yield results fr...

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Harvest continues

Harvest activities continue at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center, our latest planted and last soybean were harvested this week. Much of the yield data will require closer scrutiny before final release of the results, but here are a few preliminary impressions from the combine seat. At our location, even in a favorable weather year, our continuous corn appears to fall significantly...

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Killing frost?

Over the weekend the NIARC experienced a minimum recorded temperature of 31.6 degrees. We expect a temperature of 28 degrees or lower to kill the entire corn or soybean plant, but cool temperatures near 28 can injure or damage the upper leaves of plants. That is what we are observing on our late planted soybean at the NIARC. With funding from the Nutrient Research & Education C...

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End of planting

Expected seasonal weather allowed us to nearly complete planting at the NIARC. It has also been a busy time sidedressing nitrogen, applying herbicides,evaluating emergence and early season growth. For most in northern Illinois soybean emergence has not progressed far enough to evaluate possible herbicide injury. However reports from elsewhere in the state have shared issues with soil-applied PPO-i...

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Planting resumes in northern Illinois

Our emerged corn is showing the effect of last weeks cool temperatures, but the results are not lethal. Over the last several days planting has resumed at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center. Our fourth and final planting date of corn, second planting date of soybean (our first planted soybean have emerged), and our cover crop study were planted. The cover crop study has both corn and s...

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2014 Northern Illinois Farm Show

2013 soybean yields

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

While much of the talk has been on the surprising yields from the 2013 corn crop, the corresponding soybean crop could easily be considered an overachiever as well. The northern Illinois crop survived late planting, a cool July, a dry stretch at early seed fill, and late maturity. Soybean harvest at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center did not start until October. Despite the obstacles s...

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Corn on corn variety plots planted at NIARC May 9th, 2013

University of Illinois yield results

A deadly weekend weather-wise in Illinois, a dramatic warm-up over the weekend spawned tornadoes across the Midwest. Temperatures at the research center rose to 66 degrees on Sunday morning prior to the arrival of the storm front. Sustained hourly winds were measured at 25 mph. Fortunately, for those who still have corn standing; most fields seem to have weathered the storm with little addition...

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Plenty of activity at NIARC

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Like most northern Illinois farmers, we are taking advantage of favorable October weather. Today at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center Dr. Fred Kolb's researchers planted wheat to evaluate winter hardiness. Also, variety testing harvested their soybean trials. When tabulated, they will be available on the Illinois Variety Testing web site...

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Research plot harvest starts at the NIARC

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Farm Foreman Dave Lindgren has cleaned off end rows and fill areas allowing us to start harvesting with the plot combines. Today research agronomist Greg Steckel harvested the early planted soybean variety/maturity/flowering intensity trial and also the soybean in the crop rotation study. A late season disease arrival in Illinois was discovered by Dr. Carl Bradley. While returning from...

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2013 harvest starts in October

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Late in the afternoon on October 1st, NIARC farm foreman Dave Lindgren harvested the first soybean (late group 1) of the year. Today that site was fertilized, tilled and seeded into winter wheat. The soybean was not weighed through a research combine, but Dave's yield monitor recorded 50+ bushel beans. Dr. Gary Schnitkey, Department of Agricultural and Consumer E...

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Soybean maturity x planting date x flowering study

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

One of the studies underway at the NIARC is looking at soybean planting dates (May 14th and June 14th) and maturities ranging from group 1.7 to 3.6. The plot was evaluated on a weekly basis for stage of growth and flowering intensity  (abundance of flowers). As of October 1st the early planted varieties range from R7 beginning maturity to R8 full maturity. The June planted soybean range from R6 fu...

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2013 harvest

Harvest observations from a trip to campus

Today I traveled to the University of Illinois campus to meet with peers for our Extension marketing team. One of the jobs tasked to this committee is development or collection of content to be used to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of Extension. If you have not already done so, visit the 100 Year web site and spend some time in the Bulletin board, Scrapbook and Timeline. We are also anxious t...

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Time to plant winter wheat in northern Illinois

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Despite our best planning, using early maturing soybean variety (group 1.8) and planting as soon as we could this spring. Our plot that will be used for our winter wheat trials by Illinois variety testing did not mature in time for ideal planting of the wheat crop. NIARC research agronomist Greg Steckel solved the problem by chopping soybean in an area large enough to accommodate the wheat trials...

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Harvest is underway

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Harvest has started in northern Illinois. While it appears most initial trips into the fields have been to test moisture levels and equipment, several complete fields have been harvested. In the dry areas of northern Illinois corn lost its green color very quickly at the end of the growing season and I expected most producers to be harvesting corn first. What surprised me was how quickly soybean f...

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University of Illinois Agronomy Day

Perfect weather for Agronomy Day at the South Farms on the University of Illinois campus. The very same weather that proved comfortable for those in attendance was also addressed as a concern for the 2013 crop. Dr. Emerson Nafziger  shared that the nighttime temperatures under 50 degrees would not  be a detriment to the corn crop final yield, provided the crop is allowed to reach maturity. The soy...

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Soybean aphids in northern Illinois

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Several soybean trials at the NIARC require full plant evaluation on a weekly basis. Despite observing the presence of Lady beetles for several weeks  (normally a good indicator of Sb aphids, a food source) I was unable to find aphids on the plants. That changed last Friday. While present in low numbers, Soybean aphids were easily found on plants in several trials at the NIARC. In a Bulletin artic...

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Time to revisit fields

If you haven't already done so, this would be a great time to revisit your corn and soybean fields. Pollination is complete and a trip in the corn field should not result in being covered in pollen. What to look for in the fields? Starting with corn pollination success, pull several random ears and evaluate how well the field/hybrid pollinated.   ...

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A week in the nineties!

Thankfully the weather is about to break, most northern Illinois crops appear to have weathered this past weeks temperatures well. Dr. Emerson Nafziger has stated that corn plants can withstand warm temperatures into the nineties, if soil moisture is not limiting. A lesson learned from 2012. This week at the NIARC our wheat variety trials were harvested, treatments were applied to several studi...

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How about those beans?

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

One of the pleasant surprises for some farmers this year in areas of northern Illinois has been soybean yields. Reported field averages have ranged from the 50's up to 80 bushel an acre. Certainly not what we expected when we looked at the soybean crop in early August after a very hot and dry July. Some may remember earlier this year that I voiced my concern over the number of pods per plant. T...

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Plot harvest progress

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

This week we are completing harvest of our soybean trials at the NIARC. In the last two days we finished our high yield soybean study, our enzyme coated soybean, and our maturity x planting date study. A normal harvested plot size at the NIARC is 5 ft. X 18 - 25 ft. Soybeans yields are ranging from the low 50's to high 70's in plots that have been harvested. The October 9 th I...

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2012 winter wheat

Weather news

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

We are entering our second full week of October at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center and it is certainly starting to feel like fall. Overnight temperatures dropped to under 25 degrees over the weekend. However, that was not our first killing frost at this site in 2012. That took place on September 23rd, according to Dave Lindgren our Farm Foreman and weather recorder. It was the se...

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October harvest in full swing at NIARC

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Blog entries have been limited in the last week, but not activities at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center. In the last few days we have planted winter wheat trials, planted a new cover crop study and opened soybean trial plots for harvest. Tomorrow we will be harvesting soybean varieties and other studies. Greg Steckel has been spending time mastering the nuances of the soybean pl...

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Green beans

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

It appears many producers are swinging from corn harvest to soybean harvest in northern Illinois. Despite the green appearance of some beans, either the entire field, or sections, some producers are finding soybeans that are 11% moisture or lower. Why are the beans still green while having mature dry seed? Dr. Emerson Nafziger addressed this issue in the September 21st issue of the Bulletin....

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Early or late planted beans, who has the yield advantage in 2012?

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

One of the recent questions asked, will the later planted soybean out-yield the earlier planted in 2012, benefiting from our late season rains. Our NIARC date of planting study for soybean in 2012 had the following planting dates. April 24 th May 11 th May 22th June 6 th As of yesterday the June 6 th...

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