340 E 13th Street  |  PO Box 1205
Junction City, KS 66441
785-238-4177  |  877-838-4177


Xtend Soybeans

A few things have become more clear as we are finishing the 2017 growing season.  Driving around the country, most of the clean soybeans fields seem to be Xtend soybeans.  Liberty Link soybean fields look pretty good, too, but Roundup Ready fields are really struggling with water hemp and palmer amaranth.

We had good luck this season spraying Engenia.  We tried to follow all the rules with speed, pressure, tips, gallons, boom height, wind speed and buffers.  Physical drift did not seem to cause trouble.  The trouble we had seemed to be caused by the volatility of the dicamba compound.  We deposited the spray correctly to the growing crop, but vapor seems to come off the crop for several days and move to adjacent non-dicamba soybeans. Temperature inversions don’t help us any either.  Non-dicamba tolerant soybeans are very sensitive to extremely low doses of dicamba.

Dicamba damaged soybeans exhibit cupping and in some cases, stunted soybeans plants.  Most of the damaged soybeans seem to have good pod counts and lots of blooms, so we are hopeful the yields will be alright on these damaged soybeans.  Stunting causes the soybeans to not grow as thick or shade the ground as well as non-damaged soybeans.  Nobody wants to see their beans damaged by the neighbor’s chemical drift!

We will recommend Xtend soybeans for 2018.  This is partly a defensive measure against dicamba drift from neighbor’s fields.  We still don’t have a good answer to control volatility of the dicamba products.  The Extend soybeans benefit from the newest genetics.  With these genetics, we feel like Extend beans will be top yielding soybeans.  Roundup Ready and Liberty Link do not benefit from the newest genetics.

Growers do not like the feeling that they are being “forced” to plant Xtend soybeans.  Part of the complaint is the additional cost with Xtend soybeans.  The cost will be somewhat offset with lower in crop costs for an Engenia and glyphosate application, as compared to one or two trips in Roundup Ready beans with glyphosate and a burner.

Some growers are also concerned with drifting to their neighbors with their dicamba spraying.  We have found non-dicamba tolerant soybeans are very sensitive to dicamba, probably more so than cotton or even grapes.  We would recommend telling your neighbor that you intend to plant Xtend soybeans and that it would be a very good idea if they would also plant Xtend soybeans.

As always, we would recommend a fall application of Cloak EX and dicamba to help control winter annuals.  This would be followed by a burndown trip in April with a good pre emergent herbicide.  In crop, we recommend spraying with Engenia and glyphosate when the weeds are less than 4″ tall.  When growers have followed this plan, they have been rewarded with some nice looking soybean fields.

We do not know if and when we will see more dicamba resistance, but for the near future we hope for good results with Xtend soybeans.

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