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Senior Reader

Inoculate soybeans

Have been raising soybeans in a bean -wheat  rotation for  about 15 yrs. Sometimes I will seed beans for a number of years in  a row.

Do I need to inoculate? Seed salesman says yes. He says it is cheap insurance. About $4 an acre. Most farmers in my area do. I live in Eastern ND













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4 Replies

Re: Inoculate soybeans

The ag professors at Ohio State say you can't lose money by paying for inoculant...but sometimes you are just breaking even. The thing about inoculants is that you can get different strains of Rhizobia introduced into your soil from new sources. Something that won't happen if you don't inoculate.

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Re: Inoculate soybeans

From what I've seen in the literature, the benefit of innoculation depends somewhat on your soil type.  Eastern corn belt soils such as in Indiana and Ohio often respond well to innoculation.  Western corn belt soils like in Iowa don't responds the same.

I'd check with the extension people for your state and ask for results from tests in your state.

My seed salesman in Iowa is always trying to sell innoculant, even though he admits, when pressed, that his results are from Ohio.


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Re: Inoculate soybeans

I would have to agree with Jim on this issue.


There is certainly nothing wrong with S.B. Inoculation.


and after working with farmers in Ohio for some 35 plus seasons.


Non of them have found Inoculation to pay them a ROI consistently over the years.


Now I must say that the clients I work with have well drained soil and maintain a good solid fertility and a Positive Carbon to Nitrogen ratio  program.


Working hard to eliminate soil compaction and other detrimental soil conditions.


The lake bed clay soils of Ohio can be prone to compaction and low oxygen levels where there are opportunities for an Inoculate to work for the farmer at times. No doubt.


The Morrow county Ohio extension Agent did a 10 season fungicide and Inoculate interdependent study and found neither to be a Positive for the grower over the course of the 10 years.


In my Opinion, for my clients. We do not recommend an inoculate on soybeans ever.


And  consistently out yield the county average each and every season on overall soybean acres.


Do some intensive side by sides to see where These products work, or do not work for You. On Your farm.





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Senior Advisor

Re: Inoculate soybeans

GS74 last year was my first year of inoculating beans. What I noticed was more consistency in the sandier spots of the field compared to years prior. I would say it really depends on your soil type. Here in southern Michigan/ NE Indiana we have mostly sandy loam soil types where soybean inoculants seem to pay the most. I have also heard the rhizobia bacteria has a hard time surviving in poorly drained fields as well.

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