What about the weed-control program?

“We actually burned down last October/first of November with two ounces of Sharpen and 22 ounces of PowerMax,” says Koen. “That worked incredibly well and there was a lot of vegetation out there.”

Crow agrees. “It really did keep the ground clean. In fact, it worked so well that we had to re-bed the field before we could plant. The winter rains washed the beds down.”

Crow was able to plant with no herbicide spraying.

“The season was so cool and wet, we had winter annuals still coming up in April,” says Koen. “That’s odd for here. We applied 2 ounces of Zidua with PowerMax at the V3 stage. If we’d put some Scepter out with Zidua, we probably would never have had to spray again. But we did have a bit of morning-glory show up about four weeks later. Nelson has a lay-by rig, so he got under the canopy with PowerMax and Flexstar to take those morning-glories out.”

When the field was harvested, there wasn’t a weed anywhere, says Crow.

Insect pressure was also low all season. At R2, when the beans first start flowering, Crow sprayed 4 ounces of Priaxor, a fungicide. He used 1 pound of non-food grade table sugar as an additive — a little trick picked up from Missouri yield-king Kip Cullers.

“That worked really well as a sticker,” says Koen. “We’ve dabbled with using sugar in the past. It just looks like brown sugar.”

At R2 there was no insect pressure. About two-and-a-half weeks later, Crow came back with another 4 ounces of Priaxor for a sequential fungicide application.

“That was put out with another pound of sugar along with a CPS product, N-Pact, that’s a slow-release nitrogen foliar feed,” says Crow.

Also in the R2 mix: 100 pounds of nitrogen. “That’s not typical for us — we were just trying to see what would happen.”

At that time, the pests in the field — alfalfa hoppers and a few foliage feeders — weren’t at threshold. Still, “we ran 3.8 ounces of FasTac, a new BASF pyrethroid, just to make sure we kept the area clean,” says Koen. “We didn’t want any pressures.”

At R6, late in the season, the field did reach treatment levels for stinkbugs and Crow ran 1 pound of acephate.