The principles of fertility and nutrient uptake in soybeans are the same whether you are farming in Ontario, the US or Western Canada, but soybean growers in the western and northern growing areas need to consider some unique or special factors.
Next this soy school episode from last month with Horst Boner of OMAFRA discussing fertilizer strategies for soybeansJanet Gauthier adds some prospects for Western Canada at the start of the planting season as part of the discussion below.
“Interestingly, no matter how different we are, Horst’s message is really relevant to the West,” said Gauthier, a senior Manitoba-based BASF technical specialist. “But there are definitely some differences, and some of them come to mind: iron deficiency chlorosis (IDC) and the way we look at vaccination.”
IDC is observed in the West, not the East, because of differences in soil properties – the presence of calcium and magnesium, which bind iron in alkaline soils, she explains.
“Some work has been done to study chelated iron, but we usually think that just choosing a soybean variety with good tolerance to IDC is probably the best way,” says Gauthier.
While soybean growers in the East can pick up bags of seeds that have already been inoculated with rhizobium bacteria, inoculation in Western Canada usually occurs just at a time when seeds are being collected in bulk. “It definitely gives us some flexibility and different options, and it connects well with the differences in equipment that we also have in the West. Maybe thirty percent of our soybeans have been sown, and the rest will be sown, ”she said.
Before the 2022 season, extreme levels of soil moisture, from floods to droughts, need to be considered in every inoculation plan. “Too dry a thing that we didn’t really consider, but the last few years we’ve actually seen some lines in this area where there was one vaccination against double vaccination,” Gauthier says. At the other end of the spectrum, as is the case with many acres in southern Manitoba this year, stagnant water will also reduce the rhizobia population because bacteria require oxygen to survive.
“We know that they are not native here, and we have a longer crop rotation than in other areas of soybean cultivation, so I think it will be a unique solution for each farm,” she said.
Watch the video below to learn more from Janet Gauthier about reducing crop losses due to IDC and how to plan a grafting strategy before the seeds hit the ground: