When is the Best Stage to Roll Soybeans After They Have Emerged?

Submitted by Dennis Lange, MAFRD Farm Production Advisor (Altona).  Updated from Manitoba Cooperator article by Allan Dawson, published on June 27, 2013 “Trifoliate stage best for rolling soybeans after emergence”

Don’t roll soybeans until they reach the first trifoliate stage, or you risk breaking too many young plants.

  • You don’t want any beans at the hook stage
  • Only roll if you have some stones or dirt that will cause you some harvest issues
  • Wait until later in the day when it’s warmer and plants are more plastic and should have less breakage (check to see if plants are breaking) 

Why Roll Your Soybean Field?

Rolling pushes down stones and levels the field allowing the combine cutter bar to be set lower and pick-up low-handing pods.  It can make soybean harvesting faster, more efficient and will reduce the risk of stones damaging the combine.

Soybean plant at firth trifoliate. Picture by Dennis Lange, MAFRD

Soybean plant at first trifoliate. photo: Dennis Lange, MAFRD

These emerging soybeans are at the hook stage. Rolling plants at this stage will cause a lot of plant damage. photo: Dennis Lange, MAFRD


This soybean plant is at the unifoliate stage with two true leaves and the cotyledons below. photo: Dennis Lange, MAFRD


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