The 2023 growing season was a mixed bag for farmers in different regions of the U.S. Drought impacted numerous acres in the Midwest and the Great Plains, as well as extreme heat. Ed Lammers, vice chair of the United Soybean Board and Nebraska farmer, says drought and heat proved detrimental to his soybean fields, leading to extremely small beans. However, his irrigated acres were top-yield.

Meanwhile, other growers report similar findings in the western U.S. But irrigated soybeans were not without challenges. White mold impacted a larger geography in Nebraska, South Dakota and some parts of Iowa. Growers in south-central Nebraska and Kansas battled dectes stem borer. Both white mold and the dectes stem borer saw near-perfect conditions in unique weather patterns that caused both to thrive. Growers report a cold winter with a nice freeze and thaw cycle will help manage, as will proper crop rotation.

Read more on last year’s soybean-growing conditions here.