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Wisconsin farmer happy with soybean test plot and overall yields

A Wisconsin farmer who regularly experiments with soybean planting dates and row spacing is very happy with this year’s yields. Ryan Nell tells Brownfield, “Every bean and cornfield we’ve done so far this year has been a field record for that field.”

Nell farms 22-hundred acres near Beaver Dam, Wisconsin with about half soybeans and half corn, and 100 acres of wheat.  Nell planted a test plot on March 22nd. “We did seven different row spacings. The 30’s, twin 30’s, 15’s, 45’s, 60’s, twin-row 60’s, and then it’s a 60-inch twin-row with a 20-inch twin.”

Nell says the twin 30-inch test plot produced 94.89 bushels per acre, and the regular 30-inch rows had 93.98 bushels per acre, and even after replanting a couple of fields after two frosts last spring, the farm average was more than 70 bushels per acre… and he’s not alone in his success. “I have another neighbor, and he’s just as much a believer in strip-till soybeans and early planting as I am, and they’re seeing the same positive results with yields, where it’s like, holy cow, there are some good beans in the area.”

Nell says he’s now wishing he had forward contracted a bit more of the soybeans than he did, but he’s moving many to market now and saving his bin space for corn.

Nell finished harvesting soybeans Tuesday and is doing some strip-tilling before combining corn.

Nell tells Brownfield Mother Nature gave him almost ideal conditions, as he’s in an area where drought struck just to his south and it was wetter to his north.

Ryan Nell did a soybean test by planting a few acres last December, but he says that didn’t work out because of the partial thaws and refreezes in January and February.

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