Soybean farmers who endured hot, dry growing conditions this past summer have another reason to be steamed. It seems soybean cyst nematode (SCN) likes that droughty weather pattern just fine.
"We have data verifying that SCN is worse in hot, dry years," says Iowa State University nematologist Greg Tylka. "It's not just because plants are stressed from drought but also because the nematode is reproducing much quicker, raising population densities."
The SCN life cycle actually speeds up during droughtlike conditions. "We don't know the mechanism of it, but reproduction happens much more quickly, creating more generations in a single growing season that ultimately leads to higher egg counts during fall soil sampling," Tylka adds. "In areas impacted by drought with a traditional corn/soybean rotation, I would expect that in 2022, many of the fields that grew soybeans this year would have increased levels of SCN and increased yield loss."
The SCN Coalition has a new video series that includes a segment discussing how weather influences SCN reproduction. Tylka, along with North Dakota State University plant pathologist Sam Markell and University of Missouri plant pathologist Kaitlyn Bissonnette, lead the video series titled "Let's Talk Todes." Find the videos at www.thescncoalition.com/lets-talk-todes.
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