In 2011 South Carolina experienced a major infestation of the kudzu bug. According to Dr. Jim Dunphy, NC State Extension Soybean Specialist, the pest was reported in most soybean producing counties in North Carolina:
“We had kudzu bugs identified in over 70 counties in North Carolina last year. By the end of 2012 we will likely have identified it in all the counties. But identifying it in the county and having a serious problem are two different things.”
Unlike South Carolina, there hasn’t been a great deal of economic impact of the kudzu bug in North Carolina, but it’s also making an earlier appearance:
“We are seeing some presence of the kudzu bug earlier this year than we have the previous two years. We don’t really know what that means in the long run.”
More acres than ever have gone into double cropping with soybeans due to an early wheat harvest. Dunphy says this is really the last week to get short season beans planted in order to have enough time to make a crop:
“We had a lot of our double crop beans that went in fairly early, and that’s a good thing. We have other pockets of things going in on the late side due to moisture. That just means we are a little more vulnerable to the weather. Even the beans that are going in this week, we can still grow them big enough.”
Dr. Jim Dunphy, NC State Extension Soybean Specialist on Today’s Topic.