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Field Check Up Series
Welcome to the Channel® Field Check Up Series.
This information is provided by your local
Channel agronomist.

For Fungicides,
Timing Is

Jake Evans

By Jake Evans, Channel Technical Agronomist

Many farmers are becoming more aggressive about investing in fungicide
applications for soybean fields with the goal of increasing yield potential.
Bayer research has shown that fungicide applications can help support
plant health and reduce stresses triggered by disease.
The Bayer study, Soybean Yield Response to Variable Seeding Rates and
Fungicide Application, demonstrated the greatest yield benefit with a
fungicide application at the R3 soybean reproductive stage at all
evaluated seeding rates, when plants are showing a 3/16-inch-long pod
on one of the four uppermost stem nodes. To make sure you hit the spray
window, keep track of growing degree days for each field and schedule
your fungicide applications just before or during the expected R3 period.
Timing an application for the R3 growth stage can provide protection
when the plant blooms, helping it retain flowers and often resulting in
better retention of yield-making pods and larger soybean seeds for
heavier grain. You can review the study at
With foliar fungicide applications, be sure to cover as much of the plant
as possible. To get the best coverage, spray nozzles should be
calibrated for a medium-sized droplet to spread an even distribution of
active ingredients across the leaf surface. Because the first spray
application of the year is often an herbicide that requires a large, coarse
droplet, it’s important to take the time to recalibrate equipment for the
following fungicide application.
In Illinois, fungicide applications can be the optimum time for applications
of an insecticide to control beetles and insects that feed on foliage and
developing pods. Look for modes of action to help control stink bug,
podworm, Japanese beetle, bean leaf beetle and other leaf and pod
feeding insects.
Conducting regular field evaluations is a key step to deciding if a foliar
fungicide is needed. Your local Channel Seedsman can help you
monitor field conditions with a Channel Field Check Up Series visit and
can advise you about applying fungicides to minimize crop losses to
disease and maximize yield and economic returns in soybean production.
In planning for the next season, your Seedsman can help implement
disease management practices such as crop rotation, planting of disease-resistant cultivars and application of fungicides with multiple modes
of action to effectively manage soybean disease. If you have questions
about fungicides, contact your Seedsman or visit

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