Soy Researchers

Adam Alford, Explorations in soybean growth habits under different planting populations and with simulated hail damage in order to enhance the agricultural learning of future agriculture professionals.

This project aims to enhance student education/understanding by providing a visual resource on how the alteration of soybean planting rates can influence soybean canopy space (increased branching, biomass, etc.), and better understand the effect of compensatory growth (simulated hail damage). Student will also be able to see how lower planting populations can still yield the same, and at what planting population weed pressure increases.

Andrew Lueck, Resistance Management of Waterhemp and Giant Ragweed

Herbicide resistant giant ragweed and waterhemp populations are difficult to manage weeds in Minnesota soybean fields. Industry recommended programs in a two-pass approach and in rotation with corn can provide excellent control when applied with a wholistic multi-year strategy and intentional purpose. Changing and rotating modes of action over a 2 or 4 year program in multiple crops can keep our weeds guessing, instead of leaving us guessing.

  • Bob Stupar, New biotechnology to improve and understand soybean traits (no photo available)

Dan Kaiser, Optimizing soybean yield through nutrient management

Optimizing inputs within crop rotations containing soybean are critical to ensure high profitability. Lime is a crop input that can impact the availability of other nutrients and can have a significant impact on soybean yield. However, the economics of liming can be difficult to assess as the impact of lime needs to be addressed over multiple growing seasons. This project compares different lime sources alone and compares placement of lime with and without sulfur.

Ryan Miller, Managing Volunteer Corn in 2,4-D Tolerant Soybeans

Herbicide resistant weeds have led to widespread adoption of the E3 soybean technology. Common herbicide tank-mixes used with this technology can create herbicide antagonism leading to reduced weed and volunteer corn control.

  • Dean Malvick, Addressing Management Challenges with Soybean Stem Diseases in MN (no photo available)

Seth Naeve and Anibal Cerrudo, Is green stem a symptom of stress?

Stress in soybeans can affect seed number or seed size.  It can reduce yields – or not at all.  Stress can reduce yield through‘Source’ or ‘Sink’ limitations.  Perhaps, green stems are a clue to the physiological status of the soybean?

Ashish Ranjan (presenter: Nick Talmo), Sclerotinia Stem Rot of Soybean: Screening for Improved Resistance”

In this project, we will conduct a field as well as growth chamber study to screen soybean lines for their resistance to white mold. We are also estimating the yield potential of these lines in field experiments. Our overall long-term goal is to use the information generated from these studies is to generate high yielding white mold resistant soybean varieties.

Jeff Vetsch, Is Soybean Production affected by Band and Broadcast Applications of P and K for Corn?

Often P and K fertilizer is applied for corn and the subsequent soybean crop relies on residual fertilizer and nutrients from the soil. This study measured how P and K fertilizer placement for corn (deep band vs broadcast) affected soybean production the following year after application. The effects of fertilizer placement across varied P and K soil test levels was also examined.

Debalin Sarangi, Soybean Canopy for Herbicide-Resistant Weed Management: What Matters Most for Canopy Development?

Agronomic management practices such as herbicide application and row spacing, can impact soybean canopy development and yield. ‘Layer-residual’ herbicide approach is promoted as a tool for pigweed management in soybean. Is there any penalty for the ‘layered-residual’ approach in terms of soybean canopy development and yield?

Corn Researchers

Dr. Fabian Fernandez, Dialing in the Most Corn-Profitable and Environmentally Responsible Nitrogen Rate (Year 3)

The study will use the common approach to calculate EONRs by establishing several nitrogen rates from zero to well above where a corn response is expected. However, in addition to corn-yield response curves, there will be integration of a comprehensive measurement of response curves for nitrogen loss pathways (nitrate leaching, nitrous oxide emissions, and ammonia volatilization).

Dr. Dan Kaiser, Is fixed ammonium an important part of nitrogen cycling? (Year 2)

The projects will determine how much fixed ammonium is present in soils in Minnesota, how fixed ammonium could be impacted by fixed potassium and vice versa, and ultimately whether fixed ammonium relates to the amount of nitrate present in the soil. While this is a basic science project, a clear understanding of these processes is critical to inform applied management decisions, such as determining the rate of N or K fertilizer needed for different soils.

Dr. Vasudha Sharma, Precision irrigation and nitrogen management for enhancing water-nitrogen use efficiency (Year 2)

In this project, we will conduct a field study to quantify and evaluate the impact of VRI and VRN management in comparison to both conventional uniform rate irrigation (URI) and uniform rate N (URN) management. Specifically, we will quantify the effect of VRI and VRN on nitrate leaching, corn plant growth and development, grain yield, evapotranspiration, and N and water use efficiencies.

Dr. Lindsay Pease, Nutrient management dynamics in Northwest Minnesota corn production (Year 2)

The overall goal of this project is to evaluate how nutrient management decisions impact N, P, and C dynamics. We will meet this goal by achieving the following objectives:
1. Compare the effect of fertilizer source and rate on corn yield and production metrics (Year 1)
2. Monitor Soil N, P, and C availability in response to fertility treatments, soil moisture levels, and soil temperature in a two-year, corn-soybean rotation (Years 1 and 2)
3. Measure post-harvest N and P losses in snowmelt runoff in relation to residual soil nutrient concentrations (Year 2)

Dr. Tim Griffis (and/or his postdoc student CheJen Hsiao), Mitigating cold and warm season nitrogen losses from corn systems (Year 2)

We propose to assess if using winter rye cover cropping and enhanced efficiency fertilizers (EEFs) are effective and practical strategies for reducing reactive N losses during the spring freeze-thaw period and warmer growing seasons, while maintaining high corn yields in Minnesota. The use of EEFs is expected to inhibit reactive N losses, but we are concerned that warming temperatures will reduce their effectiveness.

Steve Lawler, Reducing nutrient loss and protecting water quality on vulnerable soils (Year 4)

The Sustainable Answer Acre is an area located near Austin that is the setting for a multi-year Innovation Grant Project identifying best management practices that will protect water quality in an area more susceptible to leaching from nitrogen fertilizer.

Dr. Paulo Pagliari, Azospirillum brasilense inoculation to enhance corn nitrogen uptake (Year 2)

The main goal of this study is to generate initial data which will then be used to develop a larger proposal in partnership with the MN Wheat Growers. We intend in developing a biological product that can be used by MN grain growers to minimize the reliance on chemical fertilizer inputs, primarily nitrogen, as it is currently happening in tropical countries.

Dr. Gary Feyereisen, Evaluating conservation practice effectiveness with a paired watershed approach (Year 5)

The research is designed to evaluate the performance of conservation practices to reduce nitrate-nitrogen (N) loads from corn-soybean agriculture at a small-watershed scale under real world conditions. The ultimate goal of the research is to demonstrate significant water quality improvements while maintaining or enhancing profitability of corn-soybean production.

The overall goal of this project is to conduct on farm trials in commercial corn fields receiving manure applications with/without cover crops to evaluate the potential benefits of variable rate N application in Minnesota.