Patrick Curl, Oklahoma State University, Braman, OK
Dryland soybean production in temperate regions, such as the Central Plains, is highly susceptible to significant yield loss due to late season drought conditions. By understanding how the growth of the individual soybean seed and the bulk seed of an entire soybean plant progress, we can begin to quantify how periods of drought stress could reduce the yield potential of the soybean crop. This study was conducted to assess the soil moisture deficit necessary to initiate the plant response of pod abortion on infant seeds and the influence of the stress on seed growth and development of set beans. These plant environment interactions were investigated through repetitive data collection of volumetric soil moisture content and the diameter of individual beans on plants raised in a controlled environment chamber. Through daily bean measurements and moisture monitoring, we may gain insight into how bean growth progresses during differing severities of water stress. Such information could prove insightful for dryland soybean production and applicable for irrigation planning during the late reproductive stages of soybean development.