Soybean South


More Three-Bean Pods =
Increased Yield

According to Monsanto, Roundup Ready 2 Yield has more seeds per plant
and more three-bean pods than the original Roundup Ready soybeans.

By Carroll Smith

Since Roundup Ready soybeans were introduced in 1996, a new generation of technology is now poised on the turnrow – Roundup Ready 2 Yield. So what distinguishes these beans from the original Roundup Ready beans?

According to Monsanto, the Roundup Ready 2 Yield gene is located in a high-yield DNA region, and there are more pods to the plant and more three-bean pods.

“We had 60 strip trials and, of those, we actually counted beans and pods on 19 of them,” says Greg Elmore, U.S. soybean technical manager, Mon-santo. “We found a statistical difference between Roundup Ready 2 Yield and Roundup Ready.

“Roundup Ready 2 Yield had 2.3 more three-bean pods per plant. The data also showed that there were 4.7 more soybeans per plant. So you can look at it from a pod perspective – more three-bean pods – or from an individual seed perspective – more seeds per plant.”

Let’s do the math.

“If you take that 4.7 seeds per plant on 150,000 harvested plants per acre, that would amount to about a four-bushel per acre advantage for Round-up Ready 2 Yield,” he says. “The seed are not larger. The yield difference is physically coming from more seed per plant and more three-bean pods.”

Controlled commercial release in ’09
Roundup Ready 2 Yield was created from a variety that was a 3.2 maturity group. Thus, the breeding process starts from that point. This first season, the Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans will be offered in Group 2s and 3s, part of a controlled commercial release on 1 million to 2 million acres.

From a geographic perspective, the launch will primarily include most of Iowa, central to northern Illinois, central to northern Indiana and Ohio. In the Southern states in 2009, Monsanto will be working with Group 4 through Group 6 Roundup Ready 2 Yield technology, and further north it will be looking at Group 1s and zeroes.

This season, Southern farmers will be able to view the Roundup Ready 2 Yield technology at Monsanto’s Showcase Tours that are held around the region.

“We are looking forward to the introduction of Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans,” Elmore says. “Many of the growers who have grown seed for us have been excited about the yields they have seen compared to the average yields for their farms.

“We realize that soybean producers in the South will have to wait another year to try the technology, but, hopefully, they will hear good things from further north and be excited about Roundup Ready 2 Yield when it is introduced down South.”