What is in this article?:
• What was a good double-cropping plan back in October is turning out to be major challenge for many growers, as record May and June rainfall in some parts of the Upper Southeast extended into July.
HOW WELL late-planted soybeans turn out is going to be mostly dependent on weather.
Depends on weather
“They can be, but they’ll be very dependent on the weather. Soybeans are sensitive to day-length, so they have a built-in calendar and they know they’re late, so they’ll speed things up a bit to compensate.”
“If I were planting soybeans much into July, I’d raise my target population a little, to 2.5 plants per foot of row in a 7-inch drill, or 12 plants per foot of row in 36-inch rows, Dunphy says.
“I’d go to the later maturing end of the range of maturities that I’m normally comfortable with for that area of the state. For most of North Carolina, that means to shy away from the maturity Group V varieties, and concentrate on the Group VI and VII varieties.
“Then, I’d cross my fingers and hope for good weather and good prices,” he says.
Even with the good weather from July until late-planted beans are harvested this fall, the chances for getting good yields are minimal in most cases.
Clemson University Researcher Pawel Wiatrak has conducted work the past several years on various planting dates in South Carolina. In general, he says later-planted beans are not going to perform as well as those planted in May.
He says, based on his research over the past several years, growers should expect about a half bushel per acre yield reduction on beans planted between May 20 and June 3.
On beans planted between June 3 and June 16, they should expect about a 0.3 bushel per acre loss.
The biggest losses in yield (0.6 bushels per acre), compared to May-planted beans comes on beans planted between June 16 and July 2. Beans planted after July 2 — would logically be even more yield-challenged, but the South Carolina researcher’s tests didn’t extend beyond that date.
This year, in North Carolina alone, there were an estimated 300,000 acres of wheat left to be harvested by July 1.
Even if growers could get into those fields and get the wheat out and get their double-crop beans planted, they would face many uphill challenges to harvest a decent crop.
According to USDA crop reporting services as late as June 23, only 68 percent of North Carolina’s projected 1.61 million acres of soybeans had been planted.
Heavy rainfall throughout the state and most of the Upper Southeast kept growers out of their fields for much of the first half of July. All indications are there will either be plenty of soybeans planted much later than the optimum time of the year, or there will be significantly fewer acres of beans planted this year in the state.