Spider Mites Might Become a Problem for Soybeans This Summer

by | Jun 30, 2022 | Indiana Agriculture News, News Feed

Two-spotted spider mites are infesting drought-stressed soybeans in Indiana. If left untreated, spider mites can cause substantial damage to soybean plants. (Photo courtesy of the Purdue Department of Entomology / John Obermeyer)

The hot, dry conditions across Indiana may lead to an increase of spider mites, which could be a problem for drought-stressed soybean crops.

Marty Park is with Gutwein Seed Services in Rensselaer – a Specialty Hybrids dealer. He says if left untreated, spider mites can cause significant damage to soybeans.

“They creep out of the edge of the field primarily along the road ditches and they move into the plant and they actually start sucking the moisture and the nutrients out of the bean plants,” according to Park. “Then, they’ll keep moving on further into the field.”

“Typically, [spider mites] are held in check when we have moisture [and] we have some fungi that live on the leaves that kind of hold those mites in check, but when we get this dry, the fungus doesn’t grow and does not hold them in check and they can multiply very quickly,” says Park.

At first, Spider mite damage is typically most visible along the edges of the field, which is why Park says it’s best to hold off on using your Bush Hog.

“If you’re in one of those dry areas, I would suggest that you do not mow your roadsides because when you mow the roadsides, you will chase the mites into the outer rows of the bean fields and then they can progress from there,” Park says.

He adds there’s a very simply way to check for spider mites in your soybean field.

“The best way to do that is to pull a few plants, take a white paper plate with you shake those plants over the paper plate and see if there are any mites moving around on that white paper plate. It makes [them] easier to see,” says Park.

“If you have quite a few, I would talk with your chemical retailers and figure out the best insecticide options that you have in there to protect those fields.”

Click BELOW to hear C.J. Miller’s interview with Marty Park from Gutwein Seed Services in Rensselaer – a Specialty Hybrids dealer – about preventing spider mites from damaging your soybeans this summer.

At Specialty Hybrids, it’s your field, our Specialty. Find your local field sales representative and dealer online at www.specialtyhybrids.com.

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