By KEVIN WALKER
BLISSFIELD, Mich. — Average results were the order of the day for a soybean test in southeastern Lower Michigan this spring, in Lenawee County. Farmer’s Independent Research of Seed Technologies (FIRST) conducted the test at the farm of Tim Vergote, near Blissfield.
The Blissfield plot was the only soybean test in Michigan this year; normally, corn is the only crop FIRST tests in Michigan. The test also happened to be the only test conducted in the state this season, though in a normal year a number of corn tests are conducted.
The Blissfield test fell under the northern Ohio rubric this year, said Rich Schleuning, the FIRST site manager for that area. Soybean yields in there came out better in some places than what was expected, he said, yet in Blissfield the yields were unremarkable.
When prompted with figures from the test – managers conduct dozens of different tests in a season – Schleuning said the yields were basically normal. He explained the amount of rainfall over the course of the growing season in Blissfield was “all over the place.” This was an all-season test.
Schleuning planted 150,000 seeds per acre with 30-inch spacing on May 19 and harvested the beans on Oct. 13. He described the soil as Brady-Macomb loam, moderately well drained and non-irrigated. Soil cultivation and tillage were conventional with fall tillage.
The top-yielding product was NK Brand S30-V6, which produced 72.9 bushels an acre. Its moisture content was 10.9 percent, its lodging score was 1 and it had gross income per acre of $620.
No. 2 in the test was Specialty variety 3032PR2, which yielded 69.3 bushels. It had a moisture content of 11 percent, lodging score of 1 and gross income of $589. Third was Steyer variety 3408R2, with a yield of 68.8 bushels, moisture content of 11.1 percent, a lodging score of 1 and gross income of $585.
The average yield of all 36 products tested was 63.1 bushels an acre, with moisture content of 11 percent, lodging score of 1 and gross income per acre of $537.
Complete results for this and other tests can be found online at www.first seedtests.com