Expect Higher SCN Counts When Plants Are Stressed
Soybean Cyst Nematode (SCN) takes advantage of plants under stress, including saturated soils and nutrient deficiency. So it stands to reason that SCN will be found on plants when soybean aphids are feeding or plant pathogens are attacking. Plus, SCN is usually higher in high pH soils and tends to be more prevalent in areas affected by Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS).
Doing a “drive by” or even walking through the fields may not be enough to detect SCN. Visual symptoms, such as above-ground stunting and/or yellowing, may not be evident for years. That’s why it’s best to check fields for the presence of SCN during the growing season.
Digging root samples is the best way to check for SCN. Use a spade to dig roots, and then gently shake off the soil to expose roots for closer observation. Look for telltale swollen, white SCN females on soybean roots. The SCN females are small – about the size of a period at the end of a sentence on a printed page – so a magnifying glass or hand lens can help spot them.
NOTE: SCN females will be on soybean roots that are easy to dig from the soil through early August. After that, SCN females will form on new, fine roots that are difficult to reach by digging with a spade.
Taking the time within the next 4 to 5 weeks may not be at the top of your “to do list,” but perhaps it should be! Soybean Cyst Nematode (SCN) is a number one yield robber of soybeans. Annual yield losses in soybean due to SCN in the U.S. have been estimated at more than $1 billion!
Detecting SCN is Crucial for Managing It
SCN can move only a few centimeters in the soil by itself. However, soil containing cysts and eggs can be moved long distances within a field or between fields by winds, runoff water, wildlife, birds and other natural means. Soil also can be moved between fields via equipment, tools and vehicles.
Cleaning your equipment certainly plays a role in stopping the spread of SCN, but the most effective way to manage it is through soybean seed selection. Latham® IronCladTM Soybeans offer unmatched protection. Latham® IRONCLAD™ Soybeans include exceptional genetics and industry-leading protective traits, battling against yield-robbing threats from pests and diseases.
To bear the IRONCLAD distinction, each Latham soybean brand must be SCN resistant and carry an Iron Deficiency Chlorosis rating of 2.2 or better. Furthermore, they must contain a Phytophthora-resistant gene as well as a very good rating (2.2 or better) against Brown Stem Rot and either White Mold or Sudden Death Syndrome.
Learn more about Latham’s IRONCLAD Soybeans by contacting your local Latham® representative. Feel free to also call 1.877.GO.LATHAM (1.877.465.2842) and visit us online at www.lathamseeds.com.