Excessive rains can delay soybean planting, but proper management can help maximize yield potential and reduce the risk of frost damage. Plant as soon as soil conditions allow.
What to Consider
As planting is delayed and the season progresses, switching early maturing soybeans to later maturing soybeans may assist in maximizing height for setting pods and help maximize yield potential. The exact time to switch early maturity soybeans to adapted fuller products varies slightly by region.
In most years, even the later maturing soybeans reach maturity before frost with some time to spare. However, as the season progresses, you may want to consider switching full season soybeans to mid season soybeans to minimize the risk of frost damage in the fall.
Weed control. Weed management is a priority for late-planted soybeans due to the lack of a canopy to compete with weeds. A good burn down herbicide application can kill existing weeds at planting and help the soybean crop get off to a good start. Planting herbicide tolerant soybeans can help control weeds during the growing season. Always follow label directions when making applications.
Insect control. Scout often and thoroughly as economic thresholds may be met faster with a late-planted soybean crop.
Row spacing. Plant soybeans in narrow rows (less than 30-inches) or with a drill to help increase canopy closure, sunlight interception, and biomass accumulation.
Seeding rate. Increase seeding rate 15% to 20% due in part to smaller plants with later planting.
Planting depth. Plant into a minimum of 0.5 inch of uniform soil moisture, but no deeper than 2.5 inches.
Plant-back restrictions. When a field originally intended for corn is being switched to soybeans, it is important to know if any corn herbicides have been applied. If not, soybeans can likely be planted. If corn herbicides have been applied, be sure to follow any herbicide plant-back restrictions.
Insurance Options. Contact your local insurance agent for insurance coverage and options. The USDA Risk Management Agency has developed the following web page of fact sheets and examples: http://www.rma.usda.gov/news/currentissues/prevented/index.html
Late planting can have a significant effect on soybean yield potential. Contact your local agronomist for recommendations for your specific situation.
1Staton, M. 2017. Late-planted soybean recommendations. Michigan State University. http://msue.anr.msu.edu/
2Pedersen, P. 2008. How late can soybeans be planted? Iowa State University. https://crops.extension.iastate.edu/
3Prat, K. 2009. Late planting complicates soybean production. Southeast Farm Press. http://southeastfarmpress.com/
4Purdue University Corn & Soybean Field Guide. 2007 edition.
Web sources verified 04/23/18. 130419023034