Evaluating inoculant options for faba beans
- Faba Beans
- Soil Health
Lead Investigator(s) Institution
Irrigation Crop Diversification Corporation
To determine the effects of two inoculants at different rates and in combination on faba bean grown in various soil/climatic zones of Saskatchewan.
A three year study was initiated in 2015 to investigate the effect of two rhizobia inoculant formulations, peat based on-seed and granular in-furrow, on yield and growth of faba bean across differing soil/climatic regions of Saskatchewan. Significant responses with respect to faba bean seed yield, at any individual test location over the three years of trialing, were few (two of 15 site years). However, combined site analyses indicated an overall faba bean seed yield increase of approximately 230 kg/ha (3.5 bu/ac). Inoculation had no statistically significant effect on seed protein, nitrogen content, total seed nitrogen uptake or seed test weight. Inoculation did not statistically influence vegetative biomass, tissue nitrogen content or total biomass nitrogen uptake but did result in an increase in plant height. It is likely that indigenous populations of Rhizobium leguminosarum were present at most trial locations and formed effective nodulation and subsequent biological nitrogen fixation to come close to optimizing faba bean growth and seed yield production. All sites involved in the trial have had an extended history of pulse crops within their rotations. While most pulses within their respective rotations have been field pea and/or lentil, the Rhizobium leguminosarum inoculants applied are able to infect and provide nitrogen fixation in faba bean. Results from this trial suggest that inoculation of faba bean should still be recommended however producers can choose an inoculant formulation based on cost and convenience for their operation. A single dose of inoculant is sufficient to provide optimal faba bean seed yield.
Duration/Timeline of Project (Year to Year)
2015 - 2018