Frances Gould, Morgan, Johnny W. | 10/28/2014 10:48:04 PM
Growing soybeans in rotation with sugarcane is not new to south Louisiana, but doing so at a profit is creating increased interest with some growers, said AgCenter weed scientist Al Orgeron.
The AgCenter has research plots with soybean-sugarcane rotations in Iberia, St. Mary, St. James and Assumption parishes, where the search is on for compatible varieties that could help the growers’ bottom line, Orgeron said.
"There’s no way we can look at what’s happening in Alexandria or some other part of the state and tell St. James growers that it’s all the same," he said. "So we are looking at specific locations so we know what we are telling growers is good for their unique situation."
During the 1970s, some sugarcane growers were rotating soybeans with sugarcane, but they had a major problem with grasses that couldn’t be sprayed with glyphosate without killing the soybeans, Orgeron said.
"The biggest weed problems we have in sugarcane are johnsongrass and bermudagrass," Orgeron said. "But this Roundup Ready technology lets us spray Roundup in soybeans and take out these two weed problems."
Since the technology became available, about 95 percent of the soybeans are now Roundup Ready, Orgeron said.
This article was published in the 2014 Louisiana Soybean & Grain Research & Promotion Board Report.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture