The United Soybean Board

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Production Research

VSB allocates nearly 50 percent of its operating budget each year to production research. Learn about these dollars in action through the Virginia Soybean Update.

Click here to view 2014 VSB-funded projects.

Click here to view 2013 VSB-funded projects.

Click here to view 2012 VSB-funded projects.

Production Research

On-Farm Investigation and Evaluation of Soybean Production Strategies for 2013. Mr. David Moore and Dr. David Holshouser requested and was granted $9,700. The project goal is to assist Virginia’s soybean producers with investigating and troubleshooting of problems in soybeans and the limitations associated with them. Management strategies will be developed, implemented and tested on producer farms and their focus will be to optimize production, maximize economic yields while minimizing negative environmental effects. Research will include pest management, seed treatments, tillage practices, cropping systems, varietal differences, breeding technologies, micronutrients usage and value-added opportunities.

Potassium Fertility for Soybean Production in Virginia. Dr. Mark Reiter requested $45,394 and was granted $22,000. The objective is to assist producers with management decisions regarding potassium deficiencies and yield responses as they relate to high yielding soybeans. Specifically, to determine if current potassium fertilizer rates are sufficient for high yielding production systems. Full season, double crop and irrigated systems will be researched. Research findings will be disseminated to producers for integration into their production systems.

Weed Management Studies in Roundup Ready and Non-Roundup Ready Soybeans. Dr. Henry Wilson requested and was granted $15,000. The project objective is to develop weed control programs in soybeans which reduce glyphosate applications and still provide good weed control. The purpose is to reduce selection pressures from glyphosate thus slowing the development of resistant weed species to this herbicide. Studies will include several preplant burndown herbicide mixtures. Control options for Palmer amaranth and pokeweed will continue to be evaluated.

Agriculture in the Classroom-Soybean Book Request. Ms. Karen Davis requested and was granted $10,000. Funds will be used to purchase 1,350 copies of Soybeans: an A to Z Book by Susan Anderson and Joanne Buggey to be distributed to pre-service teachers and teachers in grade levels PK-5 throughout Virginia in the 2013-2014 program year.

Virginia Tech Crops Judging Team. Dr. Ozzie Abaye requested and was granted $2,500 to support the Virginia Tech crops judging team. The team will participate in regional and national competitions in Chicago and Kansas City. Students will gain a strong background in crop analysis and commercial grain grading.

Breeding Soybean Varieties Adapted to Virginia. Dr. Bo Zhang requested $35,990 and was granted $30,000. The project objective is to develop soybean varieties adapted to Virginia that are competitive, high-yielding, herbicide tolerant, nematode resistant, lower cost of production and possess other economically valuable traits.

Soybean Research Support. Mr. Bob Pitman requested and was granted $6,200. The project objective is to provide technical support for soybean research program so that time sensitive and important information such as flowering date, disease and lodging scores, height, maturity date, yield and test weight can be collected in a timely manner. Other tasks may include planting of plots, tissue sampling, hand harvesting, machine harvesting and sample data collection after harvest.

Enhancing Soybean Research & Extension Programs via Plot Harvest Effectiveness-Plot Combine Equipment Request. Dr. David Holshouser requested and was granted $154,200. The project goal is to enable a more effective soybean research and extension program at Virginia Tech by improving soybean harvesting capability. These funds will be used to purchase a new soybean plot combine.

Virginia FFA Agronomy Career Development Event. Mr. Andy Seibel requested and was granted $3,550 to support the FFA Agronomy Career Development Event and Fiber and Oil Crop proficiency program. Students focus on developing agronomy and crops evaluation skills. The top two winning teams will compete at the National FFA Convention and Big E competition respectively.

Statewide Monitoring and Management of Major Soybean Insect Pests: Corn Earworm, Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB), Kudzu Bug and Threecornered Alfalfa Hopper. Dr. Ames Herbert requested and was granted $30,000. The project objectives are to conduct a statewide monitoring program for BMSB and kudzu bug. Corn earworm would also be monitored for pyrethroid resistance. A seed treatment efficacy trial for threecornered alfalfa hopper in seedling soybeans will also be conducted.

Investigating the Role of Invasive Tree-wooded Borders on Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) Infestations in Soybeans and Residual Efficacy of Insecticides. Dr. Thomas P. Kuhar and Dr. Ames Herbert requested and were granted $7,088. The project objectives are to assess the seasonal occurrence of BMSB on Tree of Heaven (TOH), determine the importance of TOH-wooded borders to BMSB infestation levels in soybeans and evaluate the residual efficacy of various insecticides on BMSB.

Pre-mixes of fungicides and grower-advisory models for improved profitability of sprays on soybeans. Dr. Pat Phipps requested and was granted $15,900. The first objective of the project is to compare new pre-mixes of fungicides and weather-based models for more efficient timing of fungicide applications in control of foliar diseases. The next objective is to monitor soybean sentinel plots, commercial fields for early detection of soybean rust and foliar diseases. The researchers will also assess the risk for yield loss due to premature defoliation caused by Corynespora leaf spot of Virginia soybeans.

Use of Genomics to Develop Disease Resistant Soybeans. Dr. Saghai Maroof requested and was granted $21,194. The long-term objective for this project is to develop disease-resistant and high-yielding soybean cultivars adapted to the Virginia growing conditions. A major objective for the current project phase is to develop breeder-friendly and easy to use DNA markers for soybean virus resistance genes and their incorporation into breeding lines. Additionally, the project will initiate a marker-assisted selection program aimed at stacking of genes conferring resistance to soybean virus, Phytophthora root rot and Pythium diseases.

Optimization of Early-Season Vegetative Growth and Seed Yield of Double-Crop Soybean Systems. Dr. David Holshouser requested and was granted $45,500. The seeding rate, seed-applied inoculant, starter nitrogen applied at planting, cultivar growth habit and foliar fungicide application on soybean vegetative response and seed yield in a wheat-soybean double crop system in the Mid-Atlantic region will be evaluated. The research will also evaluate soybean vegetative growth response and seed yield with starter nitrogen at planting with or without seed-applied Bradyrhizobia japonicum inoculant in a wheat-soybean double-crop system.

Virginia Soybean Association Promotion and Education Efforts. Mr. Dick Atkinson requested $208,537 and was granted $163,537. Funds will be used to promote and educate about Virginia soybeans. Projects include promotion and awareness of biodiesel, providing a soybean operations center, media development and providing educational and leadership training for soybean producers.

American Soybean Association (ASA) Partnership Efforts. Mr. Byron Keelin requested $25,600 and was granted $5,000. Goals of the project are to partner with the ASA in pursuing and protecting the interest of the U.S. soybean growers ability to farm and create profitability. Another objective is conducting the ASA Soybean Marketing and Production College. This educational opportunity will educate soybean producers on how to capitalize on these growing trends and new technologies to maximize on-farm profitability. Another project objective and educational opportunity is the ASA Soybean Leadership College. ASA also proposes sponsorship of the ASA 2014 SoyStats guide, a reference guide to important soybean facts and figures.

World Initiative for Soy in Human Health. Ms. Shannon Ward requested and was granted $10,000. The project goal is to increase the commercial soy sales to one new country and three established markets in 2013.

Hiring a New Soybean Breeder. Dr. Tom Thompson requested and was granted $42,677.49 to hire a soybean breeder in the Crop Soil and Environmental Sciences Department at Virginia Tech.