This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Closing the Yield Gap in Soybean (Glycine max) with Combined Improved Management Practices




Hampton, Jamie

Type of Degree

Master's Thesis


Crop Soils and Environmental Sciences


Food demand is expected to increase by 35% to 56 % by 2050. According to projections by the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, global food and feed production needs to increase by 70% by that time to meet the world’s growing food needs. Prior researchers identified planting date and foliar fungicide and insecticide as factors that increase yield and theorized that combining these practices would have the greatest potential for increasing yield and profit. The objective of the current study was to empirically examine this postulation and compare the combined “improved” management practice (CIMP) to standard management practices (SMP). A randomized complete block design with 3-4 replications per field trial was conducted to compare the yield and partial economic return of the CIMP and SMP conditions. The CIMP condition included planting from April 6 through May 25, using a reduced seeding rate of 130,000 seeds per acre and the applications of foliar fungicide and insecticide in a tank mix at the R3 growth stage. The SMP system included a plant date at a minimum of 3 weeks after the CIMP plant date, a seeding rate of 160,000 seeds per acre and no foliar applications. Yield (4.9 bu/acre) and partial economic return (gross return minus costs = $65.47) in the CIMP condition compared to the SMP condition, but these differences were not significantly different. However, despite the lack of statistically significant differences, the practical benefits of a lower seeding rate, larger planting window, and protection from potential crop diseases afforded by the CIMP conditions support the recommendation for use of this system over standard practices as delineated in the discussion section of this paper.