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Plant Analysis as a
Nutrient Management Tool
October 2016

By Dave Mengel, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus
Department of Agronomy
Kansas State University
Phone: 785-770-7902


Executive Summary
(8 min 07 sec)

Full Presentation
(30 min 13 sec)


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for PC, Mac, and
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for iPhone


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Summary: Plant nutrients are a significant part of the input costs for modern soybean production systems. Plant analysis is an important tool to help fine tune a nutrient management program to ensure the crop has the nutrients it needs, but is not consuming and removing more than is needed for economically optimum production.

Plant analysis should be viewed as a complimentary tool to soil testing, and should be an important part of your quality assurance program, to ensure that none of the essential nutrients are deficient (Hidden Hunger), or to identify incidents of Luxury Consumption, when more nutrients are being consumed by the crop than needed wasting valuable resources.

This presentation will provide information on how to utilize plant analysis in soybeans as a routine monitoring tool for quality assurance, and also as a diagnostic tool to help identify why soybeans might be showing deficiency symptoms. Specific instructions on when and where to sample soybeans, what plant parts to collect and what the data returned from the lab means will be provided.

Responsibility: United Soybean Board (USB) farmer-leaders develop and maintain partnerships with U.S. land grant universities and U.S. ag-focused research organizations such as the Plant Management Network to increase the transfer of checkoff-funded applied and practical production research information to U.S. soybean farmers. USB neither recommends nor discourages the implementation of any advice contained herein, and is not liable for the use or misuse of the information provided.

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