Vault Past Nitrogen-Drained Soils

Fresh rhizobial inoculants are recommended for soybeans planted into continuous corn acres this spring.

With soybean production expected to approach a record 80-million acres in 2009, many growers will be rotating land back into soybeans after several years of continuous corn. When doing so, university experts say, growers should expect significantly depleted populations of nitrogen-fixing Rhizobia bacteria in these soils. To avoid the performance losses typically associated with inadequate nitrogen, these experts are recommending that producers inoculate their soybean seed with fresh rhizobial inoculants.

These naturally occurring Rhizobium bacteria release compounds that cause legumes, such as soybeans, to develop nodules on their roots. The bacteria move into these nodules where they grow and multiply. In this protected environment, they also extract environmental nitrogen from the air and turn it into a nitrogen form the plant can use to grow and produce a crop. Commercial inoculants — such as VAULT from Becker Underwood — use Rhizobia strains that are selected for their ability to fix nitrogen, and, ultimately, increase the yield of the soybean plant. Without adequate numbers of these highly active fresh Rhizobia, crop performance suffers.

“Typically, fields that have been in continuous corn for several years will have Rhizobium cells, but the populations are very low and they don’t generate enough nodules to supply adequate nitrogen for a high-yielding soybean crop,” explains Jim Beuerlein, professor of agronomy and soybean research and extension specialist for The Ohio State University. “In this type of situation, it is very likely that a grower will see a large yield response from inoculation.”

University studies show that growers normally can expect an average yield benefit of 2.5 bushels per acre from the use of inoculants in fields that are rotated to soybeans every other year. However, the yield benefit often is significantly greater in fields where soybeans have not been planted in several years, such as continuous corn or Conservation Reserve Program acres.

Charlie Hale, U.S. inoculant product manager for Becker Underwood, says there is evidence that Rhizobia become less productive, or “lazy,” when exposed to high nitrogen levels, as is typically the case on ground planted to corn. Rhizobia that survive in the soil from one year to the next are not necessarily the best strains when it comes to fixing nitrogen for the soybean plant.

“As farmers look to reestablish their regular crop rotations and think about planting more soybeans in 2009, they really need to make sure they inoculate their soybeans with a fresh, high-quality rhizobial inoculant,” he says. “This will help ensure that Rhizobia populations are present in the numbers and strains needed for maximum nitrogen fixation and, ultimately, greater yield.”

Inoculants offer additional benefits, Hale notes. Well-nodulated soybeans, for instance, are capable of producing a nitrogen credit of as much as 120 pounds per acre, although around 40 pounds per acre is more typical. This nitrogen is in the soil, in a highly stable form, and available for use by the next year’s corn or small grains crop. This nitrogen also reduces the amount of costly synthetic nitrogen fertilizer the producer must purchase in order to produce the following year’s crop, he says.

There is an environmental benefit, too. “The production of synthetic nitrogen fertilizers generates large volumes of carbon emissions,” Hale says. “Reducing the need for synthetic nitrogen fertilizer decreases greenhouse gas emissions. Also, by applying less nitrogen to their fields, growers lower the risk of nitrogen leaching into the groundwater.”

Becker Underwood produces three VAULT brand soybean inoculants. These include VAULT LVL, a low-volume liquid inoculant system that also includes a biological fungicide for increased disease protection. Initially introduced as a professionally applied product, VAULT LVL has recently received approval for on-farm application by growers. Additional VAULT formulations include VAULT NP (formerly known as NOD+) and VAULT SP (sterile peat).

Leave a Reply

Featured Stories

StewardshipResponsibleAg Begins Auditor Training
October 31, 2014
ResponsibleAg auditor training is now underway at the Ford B. West Center for Responsible Agriculture in Owensboro, KY. Read More
InsecticidesValent U.S.A., MGK Form Marketing Agreement
October 24, 2014
Valent has formed an agreement with Minneapolis-based MGK to manage the marketing and sales of MGK’s crop protection line of insect control products within the U.S. beginning April 1, 2015. Read More
FertilizerCF Industries Terminates Merger Discussions With Yara International
October 21, 2014
CF Industries Holdings and Yara International have terminated their discussions regarding a potential merger of equals transaction. Read More
StewardshipThree Ohio Ag Retailers Honored With 4R Certification
October 13, 2014
The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program has announced its first three agriculture nutrient service providers to achieve certified status. Read More

Trending Articles

InsecticidesNew Research Study Shows The Value Of Neonics
October 29, 2014
The study evaluated seed treatment, soil and foliar uses of neonicotinoid insecticides in the U.S. and Canada. Read More
Crop InputsPlatform Specialty Products To Acquire Arysta LifeScience
October 20, 2014
Once the acquisition is complete, Platform Specialty Products will combine Arysta LifeScience with previously acquired companies Agriphar and Chemtura Crop Solutions. Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Offers New Support For Ferguson, Area Communities
October 8, 2014
Monsanto Co. has committed $1 million in new support for several collaborative efforts in Ferguson, MO, and surrounding communities in North St. Louis County. Read More
Seed/BiotechUnapproved Genetically Modified Wheat Found In Montana
October 3, 2014
USDA reports that one year after discovery of Monsanto's unapproved wheat in a single Oregon field disrupted U.S. wheat export sales, the GMO wheat has again been found in Montana. Read More
Equipment2014 Product Of The Year Voting
September 19, 2014
The deadline to vote for the 2014 CropLife IRON Product of the Year is October 31. Please cast your vote today to help us determine the winner. Read More
FertilizerFall Fertility 2014: Forecasting Fertilizer Use
September 7, 2014
Great crops this year have tapped the soil, and fall work is definitely called for, but how challenging will that get? Read More

Latest News

StewardshipTFI Recognizes Michigan, Maryland Farms For 4R Stewards…
October 31, 2014
As farming practices increasingly attract interest from the general public, two farmers are ensuring they meet public approval. Read More
Eric SfiligojBig Brother Is Already Watching
October 31, 2014
Opponents to UAVs seem to think they could be used to spy on other people. But spying is already taking place, through the Internet. Read More
StewardshipAsmark Institute’s New Training Center Focused On…
October 31, 2014
The newly dedicated Ford B. West Center for Responsible Agriculture will be used as a national training and education center for professionals in the ag input industry. Read More
StewardshipCTIC Tour Dives Deep Into Everglades
October 31, 2014
The most recent Conservation In Action Tour (CTIC) hit South Florida recently to tour the Everglades Agricultural Area. Read More
StewardshipResponsibleAg Begins Auditor Training
October 31, 2014
ResponsibleAg auditor training is now underway at the Ford B. West Center for Responsible Agriculture in Owensboro, KY. Read More
CropLife 100ValueAct Buys Stake In Fertilizer Dealer Agrium
October 30, 2014
ValueAct has bought 8.2 million shares in Calgary, Alberta-based Agrium, making them the second largest investor in the fertilizer dealer. Read More
InsecticidesNew Research Study Shows The Value Of Neonics
October 29, 2014
The study evaluated seed treatment, soil and foliar uses of neonicotinoid insecticides in the U.S. and Canada. Read More
StewardshipUSDA To Provide $4 Million For Honey Bee Habitat
October 29, 2014
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that more than $4 million in technical and financial assistance will be provided to Read More
Crop InputsValent Launches New Low VOC ProGibb LV Plus Plant Growt…
October 29, 2014
ProGibb LV Plus PGR is a high-potency, liquid gibberellic acid formulation designed to comply with California’s new air quality standards for high volatile organic compound agricultural products. Read More
Crop InputsBayer CropScience Acquires Certain DuPont Crop Protecti…
October 29, 2014
Bayer CropScience and DuPont Crop Protection have signed an agreement for Bayer to purchase certain DuPont Crop Protection Land Management assets in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand. Read More
ManagementWest Central Names New President
October 29, 2014
West Central’s board of directors have announced their unanimous decision to name Milan Kucerak President and CEO-elect following Jeff Stroburg’s retirement at the end of the fiscal year. Read More
InsecticidesValent U.S.A., MGK Form Marketing Agreement
October 24, 2014
Valent has formed an agreement with Minneapolis-based MGK to manage the marketing and sales of MGK’s crop protection line of insect control products within the U.S. beginning April 1, 2015. Read More
StewardshipFlorida’s 4R Advocate Keeps Improving
October 24, 2014
Florida farmer Alan Jones uses the 4R principles of nutrient stewardship as the core of his fertility program, which allows him to maximize production and keep costs in check. Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Named One Of The World’s Best Multinational …
October 23, 2014
Monsanto ranked No. 8 in the world’s largest annual study of workplace excellence that identifies the top 25 best multinational companies in terms of workplace culture. Read More
Crop InputsArysta Hires Former Agri-Chem, CPS Employee For Delta S…
October 23, 2014
New Territory Sales Manager Mark Peel’s primary role will focus on working with growers regarding fungicides in Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas and Tennessee. Read More
CropLife 100GROWMARK Announces Appointments In Plant Food Division
October 22, 2014
GROWMARK, Inc. has announced the three key staff changes in its Plant Food Division. Read More
CropLife 100GROWMARK Appoints New VP Of Finance And Risk Management
October 22, 2014
Wade Mittelstadt has been named GROWMARK Vice President, Financial and Risk Mangement, effective December 1, 2014. Read More
FungicidesEPA Approves BASF In-Furrow Corn Fungicide
October 22, 2014
Field trials show Xanthion In-furrow fungicide provides more rapid emergence, extended residual control and improved seedling health than untreated crops. Read More