Research

An interdisciplinary team at Iowa State University is trying to bridge the gap between agronomy and engineering to increase efficiency and reduce uncertainty for a range of key agricultural issues.

“Transgenic Approaches In Managing Sudden Death Syndrome In Soybean”

Our long-term goal is to create soybean cultivars resistant to soybean sudden death syndrome (SDS). Soybean is one of the world’s most valuable crops and the U.S. is the world leader in soybean production. In 2010 the U.S. soybean crop value was over $38.9 billion. Soybean suffers yield suppression from various biotic stresses, including SDS, which in 2010 caused losses valued at $0.82 billion. 

 

The transdisciplinary project team consists of experts from states and countries where soybean is an important crop: Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Brazil and Argentina.  

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Boone, Iowa held the nation’s largest outdoor farming event: The Farm Progress Show. This event took place August 28th through August 30th.  There were lots of new information to talk about over the three day event, some of that ranged from butterflies all the way to new tools that would greatly benefit agronomists.

Improving cereal rye cover crop BMPs to increase adoption of cover crops by Iowa farmers (2018-2020)

Issue: The Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy (INRS) calls for cover crop implementation on over 12 million acres, which equates to every other field. Despite numerous environmental benefits associated with cover crops, many farmers are still hesitant to change their current production practices. Major barriers to introducing cover crops as a conservation practice include cost of implementation, yield drag, and knowledge.

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Corn management following cereal rye cover crop with strip tillage and starter N fertilization (2018-2020)

Issue: Cover crops are a conservation practice that can have tremendous benefits for improving soil health and reducing nutrient losses. There is limited research available on management practices that provide farmers information to facilitate cover crop adoption and minimize potential yield limiting factors.

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Our Bradley Miller was presented with the Dan Yaalon Young Scientist Medal by the International Union of Soil Sciences at the World Congress of Soil Science in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil earlier this week. The award honors Dan Hardy Yaalon (1924-2014), a professor of soil science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Dan H. Yaalon had 57 years of an exceptional research career. He contributed to some of the most fundamental issues of soils in space and time as well as theory and history of soil science. In particular, he made some of the most significant contributions in pedology and palaeopedology, especially regarding arid and Mediterranean landscapes.

AMES, Iowa – New research led by an Iowa State University agronomist identifies clear patterns in how plants react to different environments that could lead to new ways of predicting crop performance.

The research focuses on flowering time in sorghum, a globally cultivated cereal plant, but the results could have implications for nearly all crops, said Jianming Yu, professor of agronomy and the Pioneer Distinguished Chair in Maize Breeding. The study, published recently in the peer-reviewed academic journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, focuses on phenotypic plasticity, or the way plant traits respond to environmental factors.

The 2018 growing season is well underway. It is now time to start assessing the rewards of the spring planting season. Our first FACTS (Forecasting and Assessment of Cropping sysTemS) is now live for the 2018 growing season. There have been a couple of changes going into our fourth year. A field site at the ISU Northern and McNay Research and Demonstration farms have been added to increase geographic coverage. For each site only the ‘normal’ or treatment nearest ‘normal’ is included on the webpage to reduce complexity. Yield forecasts have been moved to the opening page of the Forecast Tool and relative yield values have been removed. We hope these changes make for a more meaningful user experience.

Monsanto Company, along with its subsidiary, The Climate Corporation, today announced a partnership with the Iowa State University (ISU) Department of Agronomy to create an infrastructure project designed to monitor water quality and downstream nitrate loss. The project will provide researchers with valuable information on management practices that help keep nitrogen fertilizer from entering surrounding waterways.

Monsanto and The Climate Corporation invested more than $300,000 to fund the initial installation of the infrastructure, which features a system of drainage tiles and water monitoring equipment on 30 acres of ISU research plots. The installation will be owned and operated by the University.

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