GREENSBORO, N.C. — Earlier planted soybeans have become the norm as agronomists and academia tout the practice’s benefit in optimizing growth and ultimately yields.
With a move to earlier planting also comes the need to better protect those costly seeds after they’re in the ground.
Kevin Scholl, Syngenta Crop Protection agronomist in northern Illinois, said that’s where seed treatments come into play.
“Farmers are definitely planting soybeans earlier. That means they’re going to be planting into cooler, wetter environments most of the time, and that’s where soybean seed treatments are going to be very important,” said Scholl during the Farm Progress Show.
“In reality, it doesn’t really matter what the soil conditions are like, if they’re wet or dry or cooler or warmer, seed treatments can play an important role in being able to get that soybean plant off to a great start and set that plant up for great yield potential in the future.
“There are a lot of different pests that we can control early season with seeds treatments, from diseases, to insects and also soybean cyst nematodes.”
Scholl noted two Syngenta products as options to provide early protection as those seeds move toward emergence.
“CruiserMaxx APX seed treatment is a fungicide that controls all the major diseases such as pythium, phytophthora, rhizoctonia and fusarium,” he said.
“We have a new fungicide in CruiserMaxx APX wtih PCBX, (or picarbutrazox), a novel mode of action that’s really good on protection against pythium and phytophthora. It’s a step change on control of those two diseases.
“With CruiserMaxx APX, there’s a Cruiser component in there which is an insecticide for controlling any early-season insects that attack the soybean plant such as early-season bean leaf beetles and any of the insects that attack below ground like white grubs, seed corn maggot and those types of pests are controlled by Cruiser.”
CruiserMaxx APX was released for limited trials in 2022 and was more broadly available this year.
Saltro, another fungicide seed treatment, was commercially released in 2020 and Scholl said it “does a really good job on controlling fusarium virguliforme which is the pathogen that causes Sudden Death Syndrome in soybeans.”
Pydiflumetofen, a Group 7 fungicide, is the active ingredient in Saltro.
“We talked about farmers planting earlier in the growing season in a cool, wet environment. That’s when the fusarium virguliforme pathogen is going to be more prevalent and there’s a better chance of getting infection into the soybean plant,” Scholl said.
“It doesn’t usually show itself until we get to the flowering stage of soybeans, but it’s in the plant already. We can control that early season with Saltro. Saltro also brings about some benefits for controlling soybean cyst nematodes.”
Scholl was asked if he saw more SDS in soybeans this year than what is ordinarily the case.
“This year, there’s definitely more SDS out there. You’re going to see it most every year whether you have a seed treatment on it or not. With a seed treatment like Saltro, we’re going to reduce the incidence of that and really help offset disease,” he said.