Most Important Practice for New Ground Peanuts Peanut Notes No. 20 2024

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When peanuts are planted into a field without a history of peanut production, or if it has been many years since peanuts were planted in a field, the most important practice is to make sure peanuts are inoculated for biological nitrogen fixation. There is no substitute for a well-placed application of inoculant in the seed furrow at planting. In most cases, this is achieved with in-furrow liquid applications. It is very important to make sure the liquid gets to the bottom of the seed furrow. I also recommend that a peat-based inoculant is applied to the seed in the hopper box. This is not a replacement for the in-furrow spray. This is for insurance, in case something happens to a planter unit and inoculant is not applied. In absence of inoculant, yield will often be only 60% of yield of inoculated rows. It is not cost effective to apply nitrogen fertilizer across the entire field to correct an issue with one or two planter units. At least half of the field needs to have a clear nitrogen deficiency to justify a broadcast application.

Do whatever it takes to make sure peanuts are adequately inoculated in new fields or fields without peanuts for numerous years. All of the other inputs are important, but effective inoculation is the single most important practice in a new peanut field. We also see a positive response to inoculant even in fields with a short rotation of peanuts.

See pages 25-29 in 2024 Peanut information for more details on this topic. There is a link to this guide on this site. The link is found on the menu bar. A paper copy is available through your local Extension Service office.