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Cover Crop Series: Hutcheson Soybean

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Hutcheson Soybeans are non-GMO or conventional soybeans. Like all soybeans, they are legumes and, in addition to fixing nitrogen, they are good for mellowing the soil. Hutcheson is an older group V (full season in Oklahoma) soybean used for oil seed production. Like other older varieties, the lack of a technology trait makes the price of seed attractive for cover crop use. Although Hutcheson may or may not be the most productive soybean for seed production, they can provide a significant amount of biomass and cover. In our experience, foliage-feeding caterpillars tend to be a pest of soybeans. Seeding rate was 54 pounds per acre.

These plots were drill planted in 7.5-inch rows in a no-till seedbed on May 15, 2017, at the Noble Research Institute Headquarters Farm in Ardmore, Oklahoma, on a Heiden clay soil. Planting depth was about 1.5 inches, seed was placed on top of soil moisture and 2.33 inches of rain fell over the next three days. There was no fertilizer, insecticide or herbicide applied to this crop. Rainfall was below average after establishment.

About the Cover Crop Series

The Noble Research Institute is testing dozens of cover crop species with potential to help build soil health in the Southern Great Plains. This series features the cover crops we've grown on our Headquarters Farm in southern Oklahoma. These videos explore our results on establishment and growth, ground cover potential, and weed control for each crop.

Jim Johnson serves as a senior soils and crops consultant at Noble Research Institute, where he has worked since 1999. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in soil science from the University of Illinois and a master’s degree in agronomy from Oklahoma State University, he worked in various plant breeding programs in Nebraska, Texas and Oklahoma. His interests are cover crops and soil health.