Population Density and Spatial Pattern of Heterodera glycines in Relation to Soybean Phenology


  • D. G. Alston
  • D. P. Schmitt


Population dynamics of Heterodera glycines (SCN) were influenced by initial nematode population density in soil, soybean root growth pattern, soil type, and environmental conditions in two field experiments. Low initial populations (Pi) of SCN increased more rapidly during the growing season than high Pi and resulted in greater numbers of nematodes at harvest. Egg and juvenile (J2) populations increased within 2-6 weeks after planting when early-season soil temperatures were 20 C and above and were delayed by soil temperatures of 17 C or below in May and early June. Frequencies of occurrence and number of nematodes decreased with increasing depth and distance from center of the soybean row. Spatial pattern of SCN paralleled that of soybean roots. Higher clay content in the subsoil 30-45 cm deep in one field restricted soil penetration by roots, indirectly influencing vertical distribution of SCN. Shoot dry weight was a good indicator of the effect of SCN on seed yield. Root dry weight was poorly correlated with soybean growth and yield. The relationship of yield (seed weight) to Pi was best described by a quadratic equation at one site, but did not fit any regression model tested at the second site. Key words: Glycine max, Heterodera glycines, population dynamics, soybean, soybean cyst nematode, yield.