Watch for Early Soybean Insects & Diseases

Guest post by Kilah Hemesath, Latham Hi-Tech Seeds Marketing Intern

With nearly all of the soybeans for the 2015 planting season in the ground, crop scouting becomes a necessity. Early soybean pests and diseases can create issues for newly emerged soybean seedlings. Becoming knowledgeable on what to look for in a field can make identification of these pests and diseases simpler.

As soybeans emerge, the bean leaf beetle may make a presence in your fields. This pest is distinguished by a small black triangle located at the base of the forewings. Adult bean leaf beetles are approximately ¼-inch long. They feed on the cotyledons, stems, unifoliate leaves and emerging trifoliates. Discolored, moldy, shriveled or diseased beans may be the result of bean leaf beetles in your field.

Even if seedlings are emerged, stay on the lookout for Pythium. Pythium can cause post-emergence damping off under wet conditions. This disease commonly occurs during wet and cool conditions, particularly in poorly drained fields with compacted soil. Properly manage soil drainage in your fields to combat this issue.

Septoria leaf blight, more commonly known as brown spot, is a soybean disease that spreads from the soil to the soybean plant by splashing rain. The infection of the soybean plant will leave small, irregular brown spots on the lower leaves. Favorable weather for this disease is warm, wet weather. Brown spot can move up the plant, causing leaves to turn yellow and drop. It is necessary to be aware of this disease and what is going on in your fields.

Not necessarily a disease, iron deficiency chlorosis (IDC) is described as poor condition between the soil and plant. If your fields have a history of high pH and without enough iron to grow a healthy plant, the best decision is to choose an IDC-resistant seed brand.

At Latham Hi-Tech Seeds, we make it easy to choose such brands by designating them as IRONCLADTM. 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 soybean brand must be Soybean Cyst Nematode resistant and carry an Iron Deficiency Chlorosis rating of 2.2 or better.

Also remember to watch for aphids, too. Latham Product Manager Mark Grundmeier stresses the importance of crop scouting regularly from within the field, not just a drive-by. To inquire about soybean pests or diseases in your area, contact your local Latham® representative by calling 1.877.GO.LATHAM (1.877.465.2842)