The LSU AgCenter has found soybean rust in both Avoyelles and Rapides parishes. The incidence and severity are two percent in Avoyelles Parish and three percent in Rapides Parish.

“These rust levels are not high, but there are many acres with young beans,” said LSU AgCenter plant pathologist Clayton Hollier.

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For soybeans in the later stages of maturity these observations are not a concern, but growers have many acres of late-planted soybeans, some due to the wait for moisture before planting and some due to planting soybeans after wheat, Hollier said. These fields are in the path where the pathogen could spread.

Growers are contemplating harvesting corn now or very soon and coming behind with a planting of very late soybeans. “That situation concerns me due to the potential of rust development that late in the season and the potential of the microorganisms that could spread northward to other soybean-producing states,” Hollier said.

Hollier recommends growers monitor the spread of soybean rust and have a rust fungicide “at the ready” for soybeans at early growth stages that have good yield potential.