Conventional management practices are no longer enough to control soybean cyst nematode (SCN), which is why Syngenta advocates an integrated approach to protecting soybeans from this pest. There are a number of control measures growers can take to prevent significant damage, including soil sampling, crop rotation and planting SCN-resistant varieties treated with a seed treatment.
“Once SCN is introduced into a field, it can never be entirely eradicated,” explained Dale Ireland, Ph.D., U.S. soybean Seedcare technical product lead. “In other words, once you have it, you have it forever.”
Losses from SCN are largely based on environmental factors; hot, dry weather seem to stimulate SCN reproduction and lead to greater yield losses due to moisture and heat stress. SCN populations have caused an average yield loss of more than 128 million bushels in production annually, based on a study from the University of Missouri. “SCN begins damaging roots underground,” said Ireland. “Once SCN damage has begun early in the growing season, there are no measures to rescue that damage — it is lost for that season. You must plan ahead to protect against SCN.”
For this reason, it’s recommended that growers begin managing SCN populations long before seeds go into the ground. “The first step is testing soil samples to understand the SCN levels in each field that is planned for soybeans,” said Ireland. Planting non-host crops in fields with SCN can help reduce numbers, but taking a comprehensive approach and using all SCN management tools available is what it takes to make a significant difference. Another management strategy is to plant SCN-resistant varieties. Researchers with Iowa State University report SCN populations are adapting to PI88788, the source of genetic resistance in most SCN-resistant varieties, making this control option less effective. The final tool in managing SCN is planting treated seed that includes a nematicide.
Clariva Complete Beans seed treatment, a combination of separately registered products, adds effective, season-long SCN protection to the market-leading, broad-spectrum insect and disease protection of CruiserMaxx Beans with Vibrance seed treatment, a combination of separately registered products. Planting SCN-resistant varieties, such as NK soybeans, treated with Clariva Complete Beans will provide a strong, effective line of defense against SCN.
“The 2014 season has provided yet another year of proof of the strong performance of this seed treatment,” said Ireland. “Root size, root mass and above-ground biomass of Clariva Complete Beans-treated soybeans show resiliency against SCN populations.”