Soybean Yields Likely to Be Hit or Miss in Remaining Texas Fields

Soybean producers had a hit-or-miss growing season this year as the timing of arid conditions and rain factored heavily into yields, according to Texas A&M AgriLife experts.

Dr. Clark Neely, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service small grains and oilseed specialist, College Station, said timing was everything for soybean producers.

Neely said soybean fields in the southeast looked good early, but struggled through hot, dry summer days in June and July before August rains arrived. Weeks of arid summer conditions did their part to inhibit plant production. Pods were plentiful and looked good on plants, but many pods did not fill, he said.

The rains came too late to help the plants produce, but arrived in time to cause more problems for producers.

For weeks, rain events prevented some producers from accessing fields that were ready for harvest and beans rotted in their pods, he said. Even soybean trials at College Station performed poorly due to the conditions.

“The timing of the rains couldn’t have been worse,” he said. “They were ready for harvest and had to sit in the fields for two weeks or more.”

Russell Sutton, Texas A&M AgriLife Research assistant research scientist, Commerce, said results varied from region to region. Planting time seemed to be the biggest factor for plants in the northern part of the state.

Some fields performed well while others failed to meet expectations, he said.

Sutton said fields planted early had time to establish and took advantage of spring rains before the summer heat arrived. Late-planted fields didn’t fare so well. He estimated some early planted fields yielded up to 40 bushels per acre while some late-planted fields struggled to make 20 bushels per acre.

“A lot of producers had high hopes for soybeans this year,” Sutton said. “But it was a challenging year for some.”

AgriLife Extension district summaries can be found here.

Source: Texas AgriLife Extension

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