Under the Microscope, Ep 6: An In-Depth Look at Soybean Testing

Soybean seeds harvested at low moisture are prone to cracking. Cracked seeds often end up as “abnormal” in a seed test

Soybeans are tested on a rolled towel. Abnormal seeds at left.Holly Gelech 2012

The 2012 growing season was a positive one for soybean growers in all parts of the Prairies. It was also very hot and dry in many areas at harvest. As such, the crop came off dry to very dry. Soybeans are prone to cracking under these conditions, and the cracks aren’t always visible. The issue is that, over time, the germ and vigour of a soybean seed will degrade because of these cracks in the seed coat.

In this episode of Under the Microscope, Holly Gelech, business development manager for Biovision Seed Labs, walks us through how low germ rates are showing up in samples, what problems are coming up in seed tests and what farmers should be thinking about in February or March if they plan on seeding soybeans in 2013.

If you can’t see the embedded video, click here.

 

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