Early Season Soybean Diseases

As I stare out my window, watching rain fall, I write this short note to remind everyone to pay attention after planting for early-season seedling diseases in soybean. The cool and wet weather favors a disease like Pythium, but it is critical to make a good field assessment to determine which soybean seedling problems may be found. Often, the effects of seedling diseases is missed because symptoms are not expressed early in the season, but over the growing season, early-season soybean diseases can impact plant vigor during the reproductive stages. In the recent April 24, Wisconsin Crop Manager, Nancy Koval, Craig Grau, and I discuss the differences between seedling diseases and how to accurately diagnose them. Furthermore, updated information is now available at www.planthealth.info/seedlings_basics.html regarding soybean seedling diseases, which has information summarized across a multi-state area.