Ohio State Agronomic Crops Team helps growers deal with problem beans

From the moment some Ohio soybean growers first began noticing slow growth and yellowing in their plants during the beginning of the planting season this year, many immediately called Ohio State’s Agronomic Crops Team to find out why. And as the season progressed, the team received calls from even more soybean growers statewide with concerns of slow growth, poor root development and nodulation, and disease in their plants.

Farmers knew they could turn to the Agronomic Crops Team—a multidisciplinary group composed of county Extension educators, field specialists, and state specialists trained to address farmer concerns—because of the many years the team has spent sharing research and building relationships with growers statewide, said Laura Lindsey, a CFAES soybean and small grains specialist and an Agronomic Crops Team member.

“This year has been particularly challenging in many areas of the state,” she said. “Farmers began reporting various issues since the first soybeans were planted due to cool and wet soils that caused the slow growth and yellowing.”

“The questions and concerns they had included chlorosis or yellowing, slow growth, poor root development and nodulation, and disease. Growers statewide faced multiple, challenging weather conditions this year with cool, wet conditions early on followed by cool, dry conditions, followed by heavy rainfall.”

To help soybean growers, members of the Agronomic Crops Team began addressing farmers’ concerns through on-farm visits, phone calls, and Zoom meetings. Specialists on the team examined soil and plant samples to help diagnose issues such as soybean disease, abiotic stress, and soybean cyst nematode. The team also looked at weather records and other factors such as soil compaction that might harm soybeans.

The team shared information with farmers statewide through the weekly Crop Observation and Recommendation Network (C.O.R.N.) Newsletter. And it’s not just soybeans that the C.O.R.N. Newsletter focuses on.

“Any and all growers in all 88 Ohio counties are welcome to visit or contact their county Extension office with any questions or issues from their fields,” said Horacio Lopez-Nicora, a CFAES assistant professor of plant pathology. “We work together year-round to help answer these questions and offer farmers expert recommendations based on research and scientific methods.”

To learn more, visit go.osu.edu/agtech