Now is a good time to be scouting young soybeans, agronomists say. Take a copy of the Purdue University Corn & Soybean Field Guide with you. It's published by the Purdue University Diagnostic Training Center.
Here's a field pictured where you can practice scouting as if you were in the field. Find four things you would look for, or notice, and seek explanations for. Here's our list.
One. Grass patch- This patch of grass, foxtail, is pretty easy to explain. It was along the edge of a field that comes to a point. Obviously, it wasn't practical to spray this point. If this patch was out in the field and larger, you would seek an explanation as to why control failed. Grass which is this large is big enough to begin to cause yield loss to soybeans, even if it is later controlled, experts say.
Two- Double planting on the end rows- The rows that head off in a triangular pattern along a fence line came up as good as anything else. The result is an area that is double planted. Depending upon whether you have a drill, air drill, split-row planter or regular 30-inch row planter, adding clutches to stop seed dribble and to prevent seeding over an area already planted using GPS and computer software may or may not be practical in soybeans. Anyone who has tried it in corn says it pays for itself quickly. Corn seed is more expensive. Double-planted corn areas normally don't produce well. Where soybeans are planted double, depending upon the variety, they may be more subject to lodging.
Three: Check for bean leaf beetles- These soybeans aren't showing damage from the windshield view. If you checked individual plants and looked at the very bottom leaf, you might find some insect holes. Bean leaf beetles were out early. The first generation is gone for the most part. Look for the second generation later in the summer.
Four; Stage growth- You can use the Purdue Guide to stage the growth stage of these plants. Knowing growth stage can be important when making decisions about what herbicides to apply post in some situations.