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Field Notes

Soybean field. Photo © Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.

By Kris Folland, Field Services Manager

As September begins, the Field Services staff has wrapped up the summer seed field inspections and is quickly preparing for soybean inspections. In the north end of the state, although we are done with field inspections, there is still a large acreage of small grains to be harvested.

For buyers and sellers alike, a later harvest may start to affect the quality of seed. We encourage seed growers to run air on grain that is put in the bin at a moisture above the 13.5 percent range. It is always a good idea to run some air on all grain immediately after harvest, and periodically thereafter. Cool it as the temperature lowers until the onset of winter. Wet grain does not store well and can quickly lose germination. Each year, the MCIA seed laboratory tests seed lots that do not meet certification standards for germination. To assess seed quality, you may want to get a preliminary germination test before conditioning your seed lots.

Do not lose track of the status of your seed or any grain in the bin. Small grains harvested later in the season may also lose visual color and test weight, making seed testing and communication between buyers and sellers especially important as both parties make plans for the 2023 crop year.

We conduct soybean inspections when fields have 75 percent leaf-drop or greater. Communication with your MCIA field supervisor is important! We will be contacting growers to do our part to ensure timely and accurate inspections. If you have any information you would like to share regarding your seed production fields or if you are getting close to harvest and have not received confirmation about the status of your field inspection, please give your field supervisor a call. We enjoy hearing from you. It helps us keep up with the maturity of the many seed fields across the state. There is still time to apply for soybean field inspections for all classes of seed from certified to field inspection only according to company standards.

As always, we sincerely wish you a safe and bountiful harvest.