Evaluations of Soybean Seeding Rate and Yield Potential

January 30, 2023


  • Soybean seeding rate is a decision each soybean producer makes during planting season.
  • In recent times, soybean seeding rate recommendations for the Midsouth have decreased from 150,000 to 120,000 seeds per acre. This trial was conducted to identify and reinforce appropriate seeding rates for the southern region by answering two questions:
    • Do soybeans respond to higher-than-normal seeding rates?
    • At what point do lower seeding rates begin to negatively influence yield? 
  • Growers should consider soybean seeding rates to help optimize productivity and return on investment.


Location Scott, MS
Soil Type  Mixed silt loam 
Planting Date 05/02/20
Harvest Date As Mature
Potential Yield
Seeding Rate
30K, 60K, 90K, 120K, 150K, 180K
  • All agronomics were per local standards.
  • Asgrow® brand soybean products planted:
    • AG40XF0 Brand
    • AG43XF2 Brand
    • AG46X6 Brand
    • AG46XF2 Brand
    • AG47XF2 Brand
  • Plots were planted in 12-rows in a twin-row configuration and unreplicated. Plot size was approximately one acre.
  • Approximately 80% of planted seed established seedlings.


Figure 1. Average soybean yield at Scott, MS across soybean products in response to seeding rate in 2022. Yields are reflected after grain moisture was adjusted to 13.5%.

Figure 2. Average yield at Scott, MS of five Asgrow® brand soybean products at six seeding rates (at increments of 30,000 seeds/acre) in 2022. Yields are reflected after grain moisture was adjusted to 13.5%.

  • Across soybean products, a positive yield response was observed between 60,000 and 90,000 seeds per acre seeding rates. Some products responded positively to even higher seeding rates, up to 180,000 seeds per acre.
  • The net gain from 60,000 to 90,000 planted was 6.0 bu/acre for a gross increase of $84.14 per acre when using $14.00 per bushel as market price.
  • Factoring out seed cost as $17.00 per 30,000 seeds gives a net profit of approximately $67.00 per acre for establishing higher populations (60,000 versus 90,000 planted and considering 80% seedling survival).
  • In this trial, there was a general observation that soybean products with higher standability typically responded positively to higher seeding rates.
  • Higher soybean populations may be due to increased planting rates or survival of healthy plants in adverse conditions.


  • In this trial, soybean yield potential was optimal at seeding rates at or above 90,000 seeds/acre planted which is typical of the commercial norm.
  • These results give growers a broad look at seeding rate information. Growers can discover the range of seeding rates to stay within without sacrificing yield potential. Plant health should be carefully considered when making the decision to keep stands established below levels typical for the region.
  • Weed control and stand uniformity should be prioritized when keeping lower plant populations.
  • These data should not be viewed as an endorsement to use seeding rates lower than the recommended range of 100,000 to 120,000 seeds per acre.
  • Please contact your local Bayer representative for more information.