Soybean cyst nematode (NCS) is the most damaging soybean pathogen in North America. To combat the disease, BASF Agricultural Solutions and the SCN Coalition have designated October as RSC Action Month provide growers with the information they need to make sound and effective agronomic decisions to defend against this devastating pest.
SCN is present in almost all soybean producing geographic areas and continues to spread. Damage is caused when nematodes penetrate plant roots and establish feeding sites that steal nutrients and water from the plant, ultimately reducing yield potential. Since damage occurs underground, nematodes can cause up to 30% loss of soybean yield without any visible signs of plant damage.
To help prevent yield losses, BASF Agricultural Solutions and the SCN Coalition will provide resources throughout October to growers to equip them with the agronomic know-how necessary to effectively manage the SCN. BASF wants farmers to ‘cultivate knowingly’ and will offer a free soil test kit to the first 500 growers who request one online by October 31. If growers test their soil and send it to the BASF-approved laboratory, postmarked by November 15, BASF will cover up to $ 20 of the costs of the laboratory analysis.
“An estimated 60 million acres of soybeans in the United States are affected by SCN or other nematodes, but less than a quarter of those acres are protected by a nematicide for seed treatment,” Jeremiah said. Mullock, BASF Agricultural Solutions Product Manager, Seed Treatment. “The goal of SCN Action Month is to educate and encourage producers to take a proactive approach to managing the SCN. We know that the SCN is widespread. If growers need a see-and-believe approach, testing their soil for nematodes is the best option to uncover the threat of yield loss. “
In addition to the free soil test kits, BASF and the SCN Coalition will be posting videos and guides for growers on the site throughout the month to help them prepare to proactively manage their soybean fields against the SCN in the future.
“Soil testing is the fundamental part of managing the SCN,” said Greg Tylka, Iowa State University nematologist and spokesperson for the SCN Coalition. “Once the SCN is detected, it will still be there at some level. It could be 3 or 4 bushels per acre, or 23 or 24 bushels per acre. But you won’t know it until you test your soil.
At the end of the month, BASF will follow up with growers who have tested their soil to reveal their results and help them develop a management plan for their next growing season.