2021 Research Trials Show Seed Treatment Pays

Advertisements and magazine headlines tout the opportunity to enhance yields through plant protection and the use of biologicals or naturals, but does it pay to use these products? Our research once again confirms that seed treatments are an investment that provides a return.

Latham Hi-Tech Seeds expanded its 2021 research trials to include seed treatments and biologicals. We wanted to determine whether the performance of the seed products we offer could be improved by seed protection and biologicals. Soybeans treated with Latham brand SoyShield® Plus had a 2.38-bushel yield advantage over untreated seed and a 1.2-bushel advantage over other leading fungicide and insecticide (F&I) seed treatments.

Latham Seeds’ signature SoyShield Plus seed treatment is effective in protecting seedlings from early plant diseases for approximately 30 days, which is a longer window of protection than most seed treatments offered. SoyShield Plus includes an exclusive fungicide combination that provides excellent protection against seed and soil borne diseases including: Pythium, Phytophthora, Fusarium and Rhizoctonia.

The addition of Saltro to SoyShield Plus increased protection against Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) and soybean cyst nematodes. In fact, this treatment combination produced the highest yield in research trials across seven locations in multiple states. The SoyShield Plus / Saltro treatment had a 5.25-bushel yield advantage over untreated seed and provides Best-in-Class protection across environments. Soybean cyst nematodes are one of the largest yield-robbing pests and SDS is a growing concern for more areas, so it makes sense to order the Latham SoyShield+ / Saltro combination for 2022.

Inoculants with biologicals continue to show increased yields over inoculants alone. Latham SoyShield Plus with Talc USA’s MicroSurge had a 2.83-bushel per acre advantage over untreated seed and more than one bushel per acre advantage over other premium inoculants.


Corn trials conducted at six locations in multiple states also showed significant yield increases over the base seed treatments with various applications of seed applied or planter box treatments. Talc USA’s MicroSurge dry corn inoculant is easy to apply with talc. With two strains of Azospirillum, MicroSurge produced a 4.7-bushel yield advantage over the base seed treatment.

Encompass also was tested as a planter box treatment. It contains nitrogen-fixing microbials and helps mobilize phosphorous in the soils for easier nutrient uptake into the plant. Encompass showed an 8.5-bushel increase over base treatments in our 2021 trials. Now that’s a return on investment!


Contact your local Latham rep for more information about these and other products to protect your seeds and seedlings, so you can improve yields in your fields in 2022.