Associate Professor, Extension Soybean Specialist for the University of Arkansas System, Division of Agriculture, Dr. Jeremy Ross, explains the necessary tools provided to farmers for selecting seed varieties, which this agronomic decision influences the rest of the growing year.
“We try to look and get as much information out to the growers, so they can make the best educated decision on what varieties they’re going to plant on their particular farm and are going to perform the best in those environmental conditions.”
The University of Arkansas, Cooperative Extension Service, tests between 350 to 380 varieties each year, and a farmer, typically, plants five to six varieties. Recommended seed selections are based off the type of field and the environmental issues that grower faces. Testing is done on multiple locations, such as silt loam locations, sandy locations, heavy clay locations, in order to receive the most accurate data on how that variety will perform on a particular field. Every variety is screened for different disease reactions-whether they are susceptible or resistant to the disease. Another tool in the works is an online variety selection tool, which incorporates the information from the seed variety testing.