Vegetable soybeans (Glycine max), the same species as field-dried soybeans, have similar production requirements and good market potential for commercial producers in upper midwestern United States. Five vegetable soybean cultivars were tested for yield and quality characteristics and to assess the necessity of field irrigation during 2003 and 2004 in North Dakota. Cultivars of different maturity dates were evaluated for stand densities, pod production, seed weight, and marketable yield. Total marketable yields varied between the years, ranging from 5773 to 10,118 lb/acre. Lower yields in 2003 were attributed to significantly lower population stands caused by poor germination conditions. `Envy', the earliest maturing cultivar, produced a significantly smaller seed size, while `Sayamusume' produced a greater seed size than the other cultivars both years. `Butterbean', `IA1010', and `IA2062' yielded greater percentages of three-bean pods than the other two cultivars each growing season. Irrigation did not increase the marketable pod yield or the quality variables examined each season; thus it appears that rainfall during the growing season may be adequate for vegetable soybean production in this region.
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