Possible Causes of Yellow Soybeans (Jun 20, 2017)

Nitrogen deficiency: In fields that have been extremely wet or extremely dry, or under severe early heat stress, rhizobial nodule development can be delayed, resulting in Nitrogen deficiency. With Nitrogen deficiency, it is usually the lower leaves that are chlorotic or pale green. Within the plant, any available Nitrogen from the soil goes to the new growth first. A rescue application should be considered only if Nitrogen deficiency symptoms are confirmed, and applications should be made as soon as possible to increase Nitrogen uptake.
Iron chlorosis: Soils that are too wet can also induce temporary symptoms of Iron chlorosis. With Iron chlorosis, the top most leaves will turn yellow, but the veins remain green. This problem is usually more serious in soils with highly alkaline pH. Additionally, soybean varieties have varying tolerance to Iron chlorosis so certain varieties may show more of the symptom than others.

Potassium deficiency: Another cause of yellowing could be Potassium deficiency. Contrary to Iron deficiency, Potassium deficiency is typically more common later in the season. Deficiency symptoms include an irregular yellow mottling around leaflet margins. Potassium deficiency can also be caused by soil compaction, which limits root growth and development.

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