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Wait for soybean emergence

By David G. Hallauer

Meadowlark District Extension Agent, Crops and Soils/Horticulture

We consider soybeans at growth stage VE-Emergence when the hypocotyl and cotyledons are above the soil surface. Up until that point, there can be a lot of anxious waiting.

Emergence tends to occur anywhere from five to 21 days after planting. Obviously, temperature and moisture have a lot to do with that. So, too, does planting depth. Data from the University of Kentucky gives us an idea just how long that anxious wait might be. Here's what they found:

When the temperature was a minimum of 54 and a maximum of 75 degrees, with an assumed planting depth of one and a half inches, the time to 50 percent emergence was just over 11 days. Increasing the minimum temperature by just five degrees (the maximum by 10), same planting depth, reduced emergence (50 percent) to six days. Raising the temperature to 73 degrees (maximum 93) and reducing planting depth to just one inch, and 50 percent of the plants were up in just under four days.

It may not keep you from worrying, but maybe this data will give you an idea of when to expect emergence to occur.

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