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Extension > Agriculture > Crops > Soybean Production > Planting > Soybean planting date and delayed planting

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Soybean planting date and delayed planting

By Russ Severson, Extension Educator - Crops. Regional Extension Office, Crookston

Figure 1. Difference in maturity on September 5, 2007 for the same soybean variety when planted 4/25 vs. 6/11.

How do two different relative maturity soybean varieties respond to planting date? Results for a 2006 through 2008 soybean date planting trial at Crookston show maximum soybean yield when planting in the May 1 through 15 window of opportunity. Previous planting date trials from the University of Minnesota also show an optimum planting window of May 10 through 20 to achieve maximum yield (Table 1).

Table 2 shows two years' yield results at Crookston. They compare very well with the University of Minnesota data listed in Table 1. We do not have mid to late June planting dates at the Crookston location and would suspect the yield reduction trends would be very similar as in Table 1.

Table 1. Percent yield loss and percent potential yield at various dates of planting soybean in MN.

Planting date % of yield loss % potential yield
5-10 0 100
5-20 3 97
5-30 9 91
6-10 18 82
6-20 30 70
6-30 43 57

Table 2. Planting date and percent yield from 2007-08

Planting date 2007 % yield 2008 % yield
4-25 100 100
5-2 100 98
5-9 100 96
5-26 98 92
5-30 90 87
6-5 75 81

With later planting, expect some yield reductions; however, the soybeans planted later should emerge from the soil much more rapidly with the warmer soil temperatures.

Soybeans are sensitive to day length for initiating flowering and maturity; these events are triggered by the length of the night or dark period. When varieties are planted before the middle of June, flowering is triggered by shorter days after June 21. For each three to five day delay in planting, flowering and maturity are delayed only about one day. Therefore if you plant the same variety on May 10 and June 10 the blooming and maturity of the later planting is delayed about 6 to 10 days. This happens regardless of the maturity of the variety. If planting is going to be delayed to June 10, consider changing maturity a half a relative maturity group earlier than full season. Be aware you will lose about 1% of maximum production per day with delayed planting after June 1.

Additional references

Soybean relative maturity and planting date influence on optimal yield – from On-Farm Cropping Trials Northwest and West Central Minnesota

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