Soybean is a very common product in the United States. It is used as food, oil, and fertilizer. The soybean plant has many uses, but one of its main uses is to produce protein for animal feed. There are many different types of soybean plants and each has different characteristics which make them ideal for certain purposes. The most common type of soybeans are the bush beans or bush pea pods. Other types include black eye peas, red kidney beans, navy beans and pinto beans. They all have their own unique qualities that make them perfect for use in various applications such as cooking, baking and even making soap.
In order to determine the best type of fertilizer for soybean farmers, it is important to first know what kind of nutrients are needed by the soybean plant. Soybeans are legumes, meaning they belong to a group of plants that are able to “fix” nitrogen from the air in their root nodules and make it available for use by the plant. Nitrogen is one of the three main nutrients needed by all plants, along with phosphorus and potassium. Therefore, soybeans have a different set of fertilizer needs than other crops.
Soybean farmers should select a fertilizer that has been formulated specifically for legumes. These products will have reduced amounts of nitrogen and increased amounts of phosphorus and potassium in comparison to general purpose fertilizers (which are usually formulated for grasses). Legume fertilizers also contain sulfur, calcium, magnesium and micronutrients such as boron, zinc and iron.
There are many types of fertilizer that you can use to grow your soybeans, but the question is which one is best?
The answer will depend on what type of soil you have (clay or sand), how much water you have access to, and whether or not your climate tends toward drought or floods. Soybean plants are legumes, and they perform a symbiotic relationship with rhizobial bacteria that enables them to fix nitrogen from the atmosphere. Because of this, soybeans do not require large amounts of nitrogen fertilizer. In fact, using too much nitrogen fertilizer can reduce yields by increasing vegetative growth at the expense of pods and seeds.
Choice Of Fertilizer For Soybean
What Type Of Fertilizer Is Ideal For Soybean? You might not realize that different soybean crops require different levels of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Magnesium, and Zinc. If you’re unsure, here are a few general guidelines:
In order for a soybean crop to be high-yielding, it needs a lot of nitrogen – up to 200 to 300 pounds per acre. Soil organic matter and residual nitrogen may not be enough. In-season N application may be a solution. A lot of research has been done on the benefits of in-season N application for soybeans. Different rates and nitrogen products have shown which one works best.
To determine which fertilizer is best for soybean, growers can conduct strip trials on farm fields. These trials can be performed using aerial or ground applications, but ground applications are easier to monitor and measure. In addition, the crop scientist will recommend which fertilizer is most effective. If you are unsure, start a field trial and apply it at different times. Once you’ve established which fertilizer is best for soybean, apply it at the right time.
In a recent study, researchers from the University of Illinois analyzed 108 published studies and found that supplemental nitrogen reduced N fixation by as much as 40%. The researchers concluded that applying 45 lb N/acre or more would further reduce N fixation. Higher nitrogen applications could also lead to nodules that wouldn’t fix any nitrogen. For this reason, it is important to know how much N you need to apply to each field.
In most soybean fields in Illinois, nodulation occurs in early growth stages. During this period, bacteria called Bradyrhizobium infect the roots and feed on the sugars in the soybean plant. The bacteria break the nitrogen bond between the atoms of atmospheric nitrogen gas, which makes up 78 percent of the air. Now, this nitrogen is available for plant growth. If soybean roots show nodules, then nodulation is more likely to occur.
A high-phosphorus soybean fertilizer should contain at least ten to fifteen parts of phosphorus per acre. Phosphorus is important for photosynthesis, which converts sunlight energy into sugars and starches. In addition, phosphorus also encourages fruit production. Hence, soybean fertilizers containing 10 to 15 parts of phosphorus should be used. Potassium is another important nutrient for soybeans. It promotes fruiting in plants and helps them resist disease. A fertilizer containing 20 parts of potassium is recommended for optimum growth.
When applying fertilizer, you should consider the soil pH. Soil pH below 7.5 indicates low availability of nutrients in the soil. A soil pH of 8.0 or higher suggests a need for fertilizer applications each year. If you have this pH, fertilizer application ahead of soybeans could significantly improve yield. Moreover, soybeans are less sensitive to timing than corn. However, if you plan to plant your soybeans on a pH of 8.0 or higher, then P application directly ahead of corn might give better results.
If you apply fertilizer on your soybean field, make sure you are not limiting the application of phosphorus before planting. Too much phosphorus can damage the plant, and it will limit the yields. If you fertilize your soybeans with too much P, they will grow slowly and yields will suffer. Phosphorus is necessary for plants to develop properly and produce high yields. Hence, it’s essential to apply fertilizer before planting both corn and soybeans.
Soil test results can help you calculate the appropriate amount of phosphorus and potassium. Phosphorus and potassium fertilizer levels in soils must be maintained above the critical concentration level, which is 95-97% of the crop’s yield potential without extra inputs. The optimal level of phosphorus and potassium in soil is 40 ppm. A soybean-specific soil test should be done before applying fertilizer.
Soil testing is vitally important in determining the correct amount of fertilizer. Adding too much P will reduce soybean yields, and too little K will affect the soil’s fertility. Consequently, a balanced approach is the best way to determine the right P2O5 content for your soybean crop. But if you are concerned about losing soil fertility, it is best to use P2O5 fertilizer instead.
Research has shown that soybeans have less response to seed-placed and banded P fertilizers than other crops. Interestingly, soybeans respond to broadcast P fertilizers better than any other crop in terms of extracting P from soil. Further, studies done in the U.S. have shown that broadcast P fertilizer is superior to seed-planted and side-banded P fertilization methods. A combination of these approaches is needed to produce high-yield soybeans.
Soil fertility researchers have conducted a series of tests to determine if potassium is a deficiency limiting soybean yield. Soil test data, along with potassium fertilizer rate recommendations, allowed researchers to make targeted estimates of the amount of potassium needed in soybean soil. Agricultural economist Mike Popp helped develop an estimate tool. Using the estimated amount of potassium needed per acre, farmers can choose the best potassium fertilizer rate for their soybean crop.
To assess the impact of K leaching, a factorial 3×10 experiment was conducted using three sources of potassium (K-mag), a Policote-coated K fertilizer, and a series of irrigation levels. The results indicated a positive relationship between potassium fertilization and soybean and cotton yields. Furthermore, fertilization with potassium enhanced agronomic efficiency. Potassium as a fertilizer for soybean has several advantages.
The best time to apply potassium is before planting. The soil should be saturated in K before planting, as potassium chloride is less effective in these soils. In case of a low K level, potassium chloride is applied during spring. If the soils are not saturated with K, a potassium-rich fertilizer is applied later, when soybeans have emerged. If soil testing shows that potassium chloride is not necessary, seed dealers can sell a variety that limits uptake of chloride. The K-limiter varieties are more sensitive to chloride.
The research team also studied how soil potassium concentration changes over time in soybean plants. The research revealed that the amount of potassium in the soil decreased as the soybean grew. Thus, it is important to time the sampling period accurately. To understand this better, the researchers determined dynamic critical potassium concentration thresholds in soybean. If soybean K deficiency is detected, plants will begin to show symptoms of yellowing along leaf margins and dieback.
The timing of the application of P or K is crucial in the yield response of soybeans. Generally, soybeans respond best to fertilizers when applied directly before the preceding crop. If the P or K rate applied directly before the soybean crop is enough to benefit both crops, the soybean crop will be able to reach its maximum yield. If the pH level is low, fertilization is still recommended to ensure maximum yield.
The application of Mg to crops is effective in improving photosynthesis, plant growth, and antioxidant metabolism. It is best suited for cropping soybean during the spring/summer and September-March seasons because short dry spells are frequent, limiting water supply to the plants. Magnesium can also enhance the utilization of light energy by reducing CO2 assimilation. It can improve photosynthesis in both soybean and maize.
A deficiency in Mg is manifested by pale, green leaves with reddish or purple spots. It is also important to remember that soybeans are efficient removers of nutrients in high-yielding conditions. This means that soybean fertilizer rates should be high, otherwise soil tests will drop. Soybeans also take advantage of residual P and K in the soil. So, it is important to consider the total nutrient requirement of soybeans as part of a rotation.
Foliar application of Mg significantly improved maize and soybean gas exchange. Mg increased the concentration of total sugar in source tissues. Moreover, it decreased leaf transpiration. Moreover, it improved the efficiency of carboxylation. All these factors affect the yield of maize and soybean. Thus, magnesium fertilization improves yields. If you want to apply magnesium to your plants, here is what you need to know.
Foliar application of Mg significantly increased the amount of grain and pods produced per plant. The increase in the percentage of grains per plant, ear, and pod does not result in changes in the other nutrients. Foliar application of Mg fertilization improves yield and quality of both maize and soybean. It is a must-have for nutrient-rich fertilization. The benefits of magnesium fertilization are clear.
Besides adding Mg, soybean farmers should pay attention to the content of other trace elements in the soil. Nitrogen has a positive correlation with yield, but the opposite is true for potassium. Therefore, magnesium is best for soybean fertilizer. It is important to note that the application of potassium or nitrogen decreases P, K, and Zn levels, while increasing the content of Ca and Mg. However, nitrogen fertilization increases Cu content in soybean.
If you are growing soybean in an area with a lot of rainfall, then it’s best to use a high-potassium fertilizer like potassium sulfate. This will help your plants retain moisture and prevent them from drying out too quickly due to excessive rainwater runoff. If you live in a more arid region where there isn’t as much rain but still get some downpours occasionally, then go for something lower in potassium like ammonium nitrate instead since this will provide enough nutrients without being harmful to your plants if they’re exposed over long periods of time without any water supply at all.