[Home][ Newsletter 2005 ] [ Field and Feedlot ] [ Stakeholder Report ] [ Soybean Aphid ] [ Soybean Rust ] [ Special Topics ] [ Crop Modeling ] [ Weather Data ] [ Yield Trials ] [ IA Crop Stats ] [ Subsoil H20 ][ISU
Iowa State University Extension
Field Crops Specialist
1240 D. Heires Avenue
Carroll, IA 51401
Office: 712-792-2364; Cell: 712-249-6025; Fax: 712-792-2366
Soybeans for hay or silage
Many areas in west and northwest Iowa have been suffering from lack of
moisture for several weeks. This has occurred at a criticle time in soybean
development as the bean plant attempts to fill and develop seed. Monitoring the
development of soybeans through seed fill will be important to determine how the
crop is harvested. In areas that have not received rainfall, pasture grasses and
alfalfa have become short. Winter supplies of feed may also be short unless
rainfall comes within the next few weeks. Utilizing soybeans as a forage crop
may be a better option than harvesting the crop for grain (assuming very few if
any pods contain seed). When harvested for hay or silage, special considerations
need to be made.
- First and foremost, determine how the greatest value of the soybean crop
attained, by grain or through forage. This decision would have to be made on
an individual field and farm basis.
- The feed value of a soybean plant is quite high, equivalent to early bloom
- Baling the soybean crop is tricky; the stems do not dry well while the
leaves shatter very easily. Rake only if absolutely necessary. Harvest at R5
to R6 (beginning to full seed) if the crop is to be baled.
- Harvest at R6 to R7 (full seed provides the greatest yield, but lower
digestibility) if the crop is to be used as silage.
- When harvested for silage, the high oil content in the soybean seed can
cause fermentation problems. Mix the soybean silage with corn silage (1:2
ratio) to reduce this problem. The oil content should not be as much of an
issue if few or no soybeans developed in pods.
- Check the herbicide labels for the products used on the crop. There are
herbicide label restrictions when using soybeans for forage.
Refer to the following web sites for more detailed information on harvesting
soybeans for hay or silage or call me at the extension office.
Cornell University http://www.cce.cornell.edu/yates/AgCorner11.1.00.htm
Ohio State University http://www.scas.cornell.edu/forage/comment/soy.html
University of Nebraska http://nerec.unl.edu/ipm/2000/Making
[Home][ Newsletter 2005 ] [ Field and Feedlot ] [ Stakeholder Report ] [ Soybean Aphid ] [ Soybean Rust ] [ Special Topics ] [ Crop Modeling ] [ Weather Data ] [ Yield Trials ] [ IA Crop Stats ] [ Subsoil H20 ]
This page last updated on 01/26/05
IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY
OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Iowa State University and U.S. Department of Agriculture
Extension programs are available to all without regard to race, color,
national origin, religion, sex, age or disability.
|No endorsements of products or firms is intended,
nor is criticism implied of those not mentioned