Disease-Resistant Soybean Released
By Jim Core
January 28, 2003
A new soybean released by the
Agricultural Research Service has
disease resistance and other advantages that make it an ideal candidate for
producers using a popular cropping method that relies on early planting to
ARS, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's
chief scientific research agency, recently released the soybean cultivar,
called Freedom, in conjunction with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment
Freedom performs well in different regions, but was selected because it's
well adapted to the clay soils of the lower Mississippi River Valley and
eastern Mississippi. Freedom maintains adequate plant height in early season
plantings on clay soils, a combination that normally tends to suppress growth.
Freedom is resistant to stem canker and soybean mosaic virus and has field
tolerance to race 10 of Phytophthora rot.
The new soybean is ideal for the Early Soybean Production System (ESPS),
which involves planting the crop relatively early so plants can set and fill
pods before hot, dry months when water is scarce. ESPS has been widely adopted
in the lower Mississippi River Valley. It allows growers to harvest beans
before the season's worst periods of insect and disease problems. It also means
better prices for farmers because they can beat Midwestern growers to the
market. ARS research was instrumental in developing and refining ESPS for the
Mid South's slow-draining clay soils.
Freedom was tested in nearly 50 different environments in several
evaluations and was found to be fairly high yielding, as well as disease
resistant. It has higher yields than its parent, Hutcheson, according to Bob
Paris, a research geneticist with ARS'
Crop Genetics and
Production Research Unit in Stoneville, Miss.
Genetic material of this release will be deposited in the
National Germplasm System where it
will be available for researchers. Foundation seed is being maintained by
Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station.