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Leguminous crops

Leguminous crops, or grain legumes, are a group of agricultural cultivated plants belonging to the legume family (Fabaceae).

The main grain legume crops are:

  • peas;
  • lens (lentils);
  • vetch (Vicia);
  • beans (Phaseolus);
  • mash (Mung bean);
  • vigna;
  • soybean;
  • lathyrus;
  • cicer;
  • fodder beans;
  • lupine;
  • peanut.

The main difference between legumes and cereal crops is that they produce more protein per unit area, the quality and digestibility of which is higher, give the cheapest protein. Their peculiarity is inclusion in the biological cycle of air nitrogen. The fixation of air nitrogen occurs as a result of symbiosis of leguminous plants with Rhizobium nodule bacteria.

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Horticulture

Economic importance

Grain legumes are cultivated to produce seeds with high protein content. They are divided into food, fodder, technical and universal crops. Beans and lentils are characterized by high taste and culinary qualities and are used in human food. Lathyrus, cicer, fodder beans, white and yellow lupine are used for the production of combined fodder, although in some countries cicer and white lupine seeds are used as food. Soybeans were until recently used as a technical oilseed crop. At present, it is mostly used as a forage and food crop, retaining the importance of an oil-bearing raw material. Soybean has no equal in versatility of use among field crops. Peas are also noted for their universal use as food and feed for animals.

According to zoo-technical regulations 1 fodder unit should contain 110-115 g of digestible protein, the actual content of 96 g, i.e. 83-87% of the norm. Protein deficiency results in overconsumption of fodder by 20-30% per unit of livestock production and is one of the obstacles to further increase of animal productivity.

Grain legumes, having a high fodder value, also improve the absorption of animal feed of other crops with low protein content.

Table. Fodder value of leguminous crops (according to M.F. Tomme et al., 1970)

Crop
Protein content in seeds, % abs. dry matter
Protein digestibility of seeds, %
Content of fodder units in 100 kg of feed
Quantity of digestible protein per fodder unit, g
seeds
green mass
seeds
green mass
Soybean
39
89
138
21
251
167
Lupine yellow
36
86
112
15
276
160
Fodder beans
31
87
129
16
209
163
Lathyrus
28
85
109
18
218
205
Pea
24
85
117
16
174
205

Protein content in grain legume crops is determined by variety and growing area, but primarily by the conditions of symbiotic nitrogen fixation by air, i.e. agrochemical parameters of soil and moisture availability of plants. On acidic, nutrient-poor soils, nitrogen fixation is inactive or does not take place at all, plants experience nitrogen starvation, the yield and crude protein content in green mass and seeds decreases sharply. A lack of moisture on nitrogen-poor soils has a similar effect. For these reasons, the amount of protein in the same crop is 10-15%.

Table. Crude protein content in seeds and green mass of leguminous crops (G.V. Bodnar, G.T. Lavrinenko, 1977).

Region (Russian)
Plant, products
Crude protein content, % on abs. dry matter
average
minimum-maximum
Peas
NorthwestSeeds
23,3
18,1-29,1
CentralSeeds
24,0
15,6-30,4
Green mass
19,4
12,6-27,3
VolgaSeeds
23,8
16,4-32,7
Soybean
Central Black EarthSeeds
38,2
32,6-44,8
CentralSeeds
38,8
29,1-42,9
Far EastSeeds
39,4
29,9-48,2
Forage beans
NorthwestSeeds
30,9
24,9-35,9
Green mass
16,5
12,2-20,5
CentralSeeds
31,1
28,7-37,4
Green mass
18,0
13,3-23,6
Western SiberiaSeeds
30,3
21,1-37,6
Green mass
21,5
15,4-25,5
Cicer
VolgaSeeds
20,3
12,0-30,7
UralSeeds
22,8
14,1-29,1
North CaucasusSeeds
22,8
14,4-32,7

The protein of grain legume seeds is notable for its usefulness as a fodder. The content of essential amino acids is 1.5-3 times higher than in the protein of cereal crops. For example, 1 kg of soybean seeds contains 6 times more lysine than 1 kg of wheat.

Table. Content of essential amino acids in grain legume seeds, g/kg dry matter (M.F. Tomme, R.V. Martynenko, 1972)

Essential Acids
Soybean
Lupine yellow
Lathyrus
Beans
Горох полевой (Pisum arvense)
Pea (Pisum sativum)
Lysine
21,9
15,9
17,2
13,9
15,2
13,4
Methionine
4,6
4,6
4,3
3,1
3,2
2,6
Cystine
4,6
4,2
2,6
4,8
2,3
2,4
Arginine
25,6
34,2
22,7
17,2
17,3
14,2
Leucine
41,0
37,4
31,6
24,7
22,0
20,5
Phenylalanine
16,0
15,5
10,0
6,2
9,0
9,5
Threonine
12,6
14,1
11,8
9,8
7,5
8,4
Valine
16,0
12,7
12,6
9,3
10,0
8,5
Tryptophan
3,6
2,1
2,9
1,6
1,6
1,1
Histidine
8,0
10,9
6,3
7,2
7,3
7,1
Amount
154
152
122
97
95
88

Seeds of some leguminous plants contain a sufficiently high amount of fat: in soybean – 16-27%, cicer – about 5%, white lupine – up to 10%, which also contributes to the feed value.

According to their nutritive value, 1 kg of grain is equal to 1.1-1.4 fodder units, the digestible protein content being 160-200 g. The vegetative mass is used for making hay, haylage, grass meal and for green fodder. Silage green mass of grain legumes with corn or other crops increases the protein balance of silage. Mixed crops of legumes and grain crops increase the fodder value of the latter.

The industrial importance of leguminous crops is that the seeds are used to produce cereals and flour, confectionery, preserves, oils, food and feed concentrates. Unripe seeds and fruits are used to make canned vegetables. Soybean seed oil is of food and technical value. The enzyme urease and protein in beans are used in medicine. Soybean and chinna seeds are a raw material for the production of casein, glue and plastics.

Agronomic importance lies in providing a large harvest of plant protein and are less nitrogen-depleting than nonlegume crops. Although symbiotically fixed nitrogen is alienated with the crop, more nitrogen remains with the organic residues of legumes than with the residues of other crops, so they have proven to be good predecessors in the rotation. The root system of many legumes is capable of assimilating nutrients difficult for other crops, such as tri-substituted phosphates.

Alkaloid varieties of yellow lupine are cultivated as a green fertilizer on sandy soils, narrow-leaved lupine on loamy ones. Yields of green mass of up to 30 tons/ha are formed. Some legumes are grown as intercrops in different areas of the country for green fodder and to increase soil fertility.

Cultivation areas

In the world agriculture leguminous crops occupy 135-160 million hectares, which is about 13% of grain crops. The largest areas of cultivation are in India and China. The gross yield is 230 million tons, or 9 times less than that of grain crops. The average yield in the world is 1.5 t/ha.

In the USSR, grain legumes covered 6.7 million ha as of 1984, in Russia – 1.2-2.0 million ha with yields in the 1990s of 1.2-1.6 t/ha. Gross yield is 1.8 million tons. Peas are the most common crop in Russia. The USSR ranked first in the world by sown area, which amounted to 4.95 million hectares and the collection of pea seeds. Soybeans and lupine also accounted for a large share of the sown area. Beans, lentils, cicer, lathyrus and fodder beans are cultivated in small areas.

Dry areas of the steppe zone are sown with drought-resistant cicer and lathyrus; fertile clay and loamy soils of the Baltic, Polesie, central part of the forest zone and the Urals are the high-yielding fodder beans; yellow fodder lupine is sown on sandy soils.

In the Far East, in some areas of the North Caucasus, Ukraine, Moldova and the Lower Volga region, soybean is the most valuable crop.

Botanical description

Root system

The root system of leguminous crops has the main tap root, the depth of penetration reaches 2 m, and numerous lateral roots of the second, third and subsequent orders, placed mainly in the arable layer of soil. On chernozems and some other soils 70-75% of root system is placed in arable layer, on sod-podzolic soils the share of roots in arable layer is 85-95%, on soils with thick podzolic layer – up to 100%. The optimum soil volume mass for normal root system development is 1-1.3 g/cm3.

Stem

The stem has a different structure. In soybeans, lupines, beans, cicer, and bush beans, the stems are upright throughout the growing season. Peas, vetch, lentils, lathyrus and some forms of beans have loping stems. The apical leaflets of the pinnate leaves are reduced to tendrils, which the plants use to cling to one another. The stems are held upright until the seeds are completely full. By the time they reach maturity, the stems are lodged.

Leaf

According to the structure of the leaves, leguminous crops are divided into:

  • plants with pinnate leaves – peas, lentils, chickpeas, chickpeas, beans;
  • plants with trifoliate leaves – beans, soybeans;
  • sessile leaflets plants – lupine.

These groups differ in the nature of initial growth and peculiarities of agrotechnics. Plants with pinnate leaves germinate at the expense of the epicothelium, so they do not bring seeds to the surface, allowing for deeper embedding of seeds and harrowing before and after emergence.

Plants of other groups grow first by extending the subcotyledonous knee (hypocotyl) and bring to the surface of the seedling. They require finer seed embedding, harrowing before sprouting is not carried out.

Flower

The flowers are irregular; the perianth is double. The corolla consists of petals of different size and shape (boat, sail, and wings). The flower contains 10 stamens and one pistil with a single ovary and several testes. The corolla is white to bright red or purple. For most grain legumes, flowers are gathered in inflorescences at the top of the main stem and lateral shoots.

Fruit

The fruit is a bean, of varying size and shape, often incorrectly called a silique. It opens with two valves and contains several seeds. After ripening, for most species the beans crack along the longitudinal seams, the valves twist and the seeds are scattered. In cicer and some species and varieties of lupine, the beans do not crack. Varieties of beans, soybeans, and lathyrus with weak bean cracking have been bred.

Seeds

Seeds vary in shape (from round to flat and angular), size and color. The seed consists of a seed coat and a germ. At the place where the seed is attached to the fruit, the seed welt is preserved; in beans, there are tubercles of halase and micropiles. The embryo consists of two fleshy cotyledons and a germinal root and kidney between them, from which the above-ground part of the plant is then formed. The cotyledon represents the germ leaves where the nutrient reserves used in germination are concentrated.

Chemical composition of grain

The seeds of grain legumes contain a lot of protein, rich in essential amino acids, minerals and vitamins.

Table. Average chemical composition of grain legume seeds at 14% moisture, in %[1] Fundamentals of agricultural production technology. Farming and plant growing. Ed. by V.S. Niklyaev. - Moscow: "Bylina", 2000. - 555 p. [2]V.V. Kolomeychenko. Crop production/textbook. - Moscow: Agrobiznesentr, 2007. - 600 с. ISBN 978-5-902792-11-6.

Crop
Proteins
Nitrogen-free substances
Fats
Carbohydrates
Fiber
Minerals
Peas
22,9-27
52
1,4-1,5
41,2
3,5
2,0-2,7
Forage beans
23-30
45
1,5-2,0
55,0
6,0
3,1-3,5
Lens
23,5-28
50
1,4-2,0
52,0
3,0
3,0-3,2
Lathyrus
23-27
48
1,5-2,0
55,0
6,0
3,0-3,2
Cicer
19,8-25
49
3,4-4,5
41,2
4,0
2,7-3,5
Beans
21,3-28
49
1,6-2,0
40,1
4,0
3,0-4,0
Vigna
28
48
1,7
5,4
2,9
Soybean
33,7
24
18,1-19,0
6,3
4,0
4,7-5,0
Lupine narrow-leaved
34,9-40
24
5,0-5,5
39,9
12,0
3,8-4,5
Lupine yellow
43,9
-
5,4
28,9
-
5,1
Lupine white
37,6
-
8,8
35,9
-
4,1
Common vetch
26,0
-
1,7
49,8
-
3,2
Peanuts
25,3
-
48,1
8,3
-
2,2

Soybean and peanut seeds are high in fat.

Biological features

Temperature requirements

For grain legumes, higher temperatures during the phases of filling and seed ripening are important, which does not allow sowing at a later date and limits the expansion of cultivation areas to the north.

Table. Air temperature at which grain legumes are damaged in different phases of development, °C (V.N. Stepanov)

Crop
Sprouting
Flowering
Ripening
Peas
-7...-8
-2...-3
-3...-4
Lupine blue
-6...-8
-3
-3
Forage beans
-5...-6
-2...-3
-3
Lupine yellow
-4...-5
-2...-3
-
Beans
-1...-1,5
-0,5...-1
-2

Table. Temperature requirements of legume crops during different growth periods (V.N. Stepanov)

Crop
Period
sprouting
vegetative organ formation
formation of generative organs, flowering
fruiting
minimum
optimum
minimum
optimum
minimum
optimum
minimum
optimum
Peas
4-5
6-12
4-5
12-16
10-12
16-20
12-10
22-16
Lens
4-5
6-12
4-5
12-16
12-15
17-21
12-10
22-17
Lathyrus
4-5
6-12
4-5
12-16
10-12
17-21
12-10
23-19
Lupine narrow-leaved
5-6
9-12
5-6
14-16
8-10
16-20
10
20-16
Forage beans
5-6
9-12
5-6
12-16
8-10
16-20
10
22-16
Cicer
5-6
9-12
5-6
17-18
12-15
17-21
15-12
24-20
Soybean
10-11
15-18
10-11
15-18
15-18
18-22
12-10
22-18
Beans
12-13
15-18
12-13
16-26
15-18
18-25
15-12
23-20

Moisture requirements

Grain legumes need more moisture than cereals. They do not tolerate close groundwater. Soybeans, fodder beans, lupines, and peas are the most moisture-demanding. These plants are cultivated in areas with sufficient moisture. Cicer and lathyrus are drought-resistant. Lentils and beans occupy an intermediate position.

Optimal soil moisture for all crops, providing active nitrogen fixation and high yields is moisture from 100% of the smallest moisture capacity to capillary breakdown moisture of about 60% of the smallest moisture capacity.

Nutrient requirements

Since leguminous crops contain a large amount of nutrients per crop unit, the need for elements of mineral nutrition is greater than that of cereals. The need is characterized by removal and maximum consumption.

Table. Nutrient removal and maximum nutrient consumption of 1 ton of seeds and the corresponding amount of organic matter of leguminous crops, kg (G.S. Posypynov, 1983)

Crop
Maximum consumption
Removal
N
P2O5
K2O
total
N
P2O5
K2O
total
Pea (Pisum sativum)
64
21
29
114
50
16
24
90
Pea (Pisum arvense)
56
23
26
105
45
20
17
82
Cicer
64
25
60
149
52
21
49
122
Forage beans
65
26
55
146
52
20
44
116
Beans
66
25
40
131
53
22
29
104
Lathyrus
70
19
39
128
58
16
30
114
Lentils
70
23
38
131
59
20
28
107
Common vetch
74
20
28
122
62
14
16
92
Lupine narrow-leaved
78
20
51
149
67
19
43
129
Lupine yellow
80
22
50
152
68
19
42
129
Soybean
82
26
47
155
72
23
38
133
On average
69
23
42
135
58
19
33
110

The indicators of removal are determined during the harvesting period. The maximum consumption of nutrients and accumulation of organic matter falls on the phase of full filling of the seeds, when the lower beans begin to turn yellow, the upper ones are done, but the leaves have not yet fallen off.

On average, 110 kg of nutrients are removed from 1 ton of grain legume seeds and the corresponding amount of organic matter, which is 2 times higher than from 1 ton of cereal grain. Maximum nitrogen consumption for the formation of 1 ton of legume seeds averaged 69 kg, while for 1 ton of cereal grain – 34 kg. Therefore, when nitrogen fixation activity is low, legume crops reduce yield by 1.5-2 times more than cereals.

In dry summers leguminous crops use less phosphorus than in wet ones and more potassium. When there is a lack of moisture, nitrogen uptake by crops and protein content in seeds is lower than in years with normal moisture supply due to a decrease in nitrogen fixation.

The dynamics of nutrient consumption determines the timing of harvesting legumes for green mass. For example, if peas are harvested at the flowering stage, only one third of the possible crude protein is collected from the crop. It is more rational to harvest this crop when the middle beans are completely done and the filling of the seeds of the upper beans ends. During this period, the largest crop of green mass is formed, the collection of crude protein is greater.

Lupine gives no more than half of the crop in the flowering phase, so harvesting for green mass is not carried out before the phase of shiny beans.

Light requirements

Grain legumes are divided according to the requirement for light regime into:

  • long-day plants, in which the growing season shortens with lengthening daylight hours – peas, lentils, lathyrus, lupines, and beans;
  • short-day plants, in which the vegetation period is shortened with decreasing daylight hours – soybeans, mung bean;
  • a group of neutral plants – most varieties of common beans, cicer.

Varieties that are neutral to the duration of the day have been developed for almost every crop. For short-day plants, the duration of vegetation increases in the north, for long-day plants – in the south.

Soil requirements

Optimal for the cultivation of grain legumes are moderately loamy, slightly acidic or neutral loamy and sandy loam soils with high phosphorus, potassium and calcium content. They do not grow well on acidic and sandy soils, except for yellow lupine which gives good yields on sandy soils with pH 4-4,5. Field peas (Pisum arvense) also give good yields on slightly acidic sandy soils.

Legumes have different requirements for the reaction of soil solution. They are divided into 6 groups according to the activity of symbiotic nitrogen fixation depending on soil acidity.

Table. Classification of legume crops according to symbiosis activity with nodule bacteria depending on soil acidity (pH of salt extract) (G.S. Posypanov, 1983)

Group
Crop
4,0
5,0
5,5
6,0
6,5
7,0
7,5
ILupine perennial, horned lupine (Lotus corniculatus), yellow lupine, bird's-foot (Ornithopus)
3
4
5
5
5
4
2
IITrifolium hybridum, Pisum arvense, Trifolium repens, Lupinus angustifolius
2
3
4
5
5
5
4
IIIVicia sativa, Trifolium pratense, Pisum sativum, fodder beans
1
3
4
5
5
5
4
IVSoybean, white lupine, Vicia villosa
0
2
3
4
5
5
5
VCommon bean, Lathyrus sativus, cicer
0
1
2
4
5
5
5
VIAlfalfa, melilot, sainfoin
0
1
2
3
5
5
5

Note. 0 – no symbiosis; 1 – symbiosis very weak, single small nodules on some plants; 2 – symbiosis weak, more than half of plants with nodules, small pale pink nodules; 3 – all plants with nodules, mainly small, pink; 4 – more than half of nodules pink, large; 5 – many large red nodules.

The above classification makes it possible to:

  • determine which legume crop is more rational to sow in a particular field with known acidity for the greatest assimilation of atmospheric nitrogen and to produce the greatest yield of good quality;
  • at what acidity the chosen crop is able to fix the maximum amount of nitrogen and form the largest yield of good quality;
  • to what level of environmental reaction should the soil for the crop be limed to provide the best nitrogen fixation conditions.

Growth phases (phenological phases)

The growth phases of legume crops:

  • germination;
  • sprouting;
  • stem branching;
  • budding;
  • flowering;
  • bean formation;
  • ripening;
  • full ripeness.

Intensive cultivation technology

Crop rotation

Grain legumes can be placed in the rotation after any crop except perennial legume grasses and grain legumes. Placing on legume crops leads to the accumulation of specific pests and diseases. Cereal legume crops are returned to the same field not earlier than 3-4 years when the numbers of specific pests and diseases are sufficiently reduced.

Grain legumes are good predecessors for cereals, row crops and industrial crops; their main advantage is nitrogen accumulation as a result of symbiotic nitrogen fixation.

Legumes with a short growing season can be sown for green fodder or hay as fallow-occupied crops, which is especially important for the northern and northwestern areas of the Non-Black Soil Zone, where a short warm period limits the set of fallow-occupied crops.

Fertilizer system

Phosphorus and potassium

The need for phosphorus-potassium fertilizers and application rates for legume crops are determined by the content of these elements in the soil of a particular field. According to the supply of mobile phosphorus (according to Kirsanov) and exchangeable potassium (according to Maslova) soils are divided into 6 groups (All-Russian Institute of Fertilizers and Agro-soil Science, 1982):

  1. very low supply – less than 2.5 mg/100 g soil P2O5 and less than 4.0 mg/100 g K2O;
  2. low supply – 2.5-5.0 mg/100 g soil P2O5 and 4.1-8.0 mg/100 g K2O;
  3. medium supply – 5.1-10.0 mg/100 g soil P2O5 and 8.1-12.0 mg/100 g K2O;
  4. higher supply – 10.1-15.0 mg/100 g soil P2O5 and 12.1-17.0 mg/100 g K2O;
  5. high supply – 15.1-25.0 mg/100 g soil P2O5 and 17.1-25.0 mg/100 g K2O;
  6. very high supply – more than 25.0 mg/100 g soil P2O5 and more than 25.0 mg/100 g K2O.

At very low and low provision of soil with phosphorus and potassium and increased acidity even high doses of phosphorus-potassium fertilizers and lime fertilizers under legume crops does not provide active nitrogen fixation and high yield due to the presence in the arable layer centers of high acidity and low phosphorus, potassium content. On such soils it is better to sow legumes in the second year after liming and fertilizing.

On limed soils with an average supply of mobile phosphorus and exchangeable potassium, the rate of phosphorus-potassium fertilizer is determined on the basis of the biological needs of the culture and the planned yield. Fertilizers are applied in autumn for autumn plowing or in spring for deep cultivation.

On soils with higher and high supply of phosphorus-potassium fertilizers, most often, have little effect on yield. On such soils, you can apply small doses of phosphorus and potassium fertilizers under pre-sowing cultivation to maintain soil security. On soils with a very high supply of fertilizers do not apply.

An exception among grain legumes is yellow lupine. Under it, phosphorus-potassium fertilizer is not applied if the content of phosphorus and potassium is more than 5 mg/100 g of soil.

Microfertilizers

Micronutrient supply strongly affects the activity of symbiotic nitrogen fixation. Soils are classified into 3 groups according to the content of trace elements (All-Russian Institute of Fertilizers and Agrosoil Science, 1982):

  1. Low supply – less than 0.5 mg/kg soil boron (in water extract), less than 0.3 mg/kg soil molybdenum (in oxalate extract), less than 5 mg/kg soil copper (in 1 n hydrochloric acid extract);
  2. Medium supply – 0.5-1.0 mg/kg of boron (in aqueous extract), 0.3-0.5 mg/kg of molybdenum (in oxalate extract), 5-7 mg/kg of copper (in 1 n hydrochloric acid extract);
  3. High supply – more than 1.0 mg/kg of boron (in water extract), more than 0.5 mg/kg of molybdenum (in oxalate extract), more than 7 mg/kg of copper (in 1 n hydrochloric acid extract).

Microfertilizers are applied at low and medium supply.

Bacterial fertilizers

For the formation of nodules on the roots of legume plants, a virulent active bacterial strain of the genus Rhizobium, which according to L.M. Dorosinsky, is divided into 11 species. Each of them infects one or more species of legume plants.

Spontaneous Rhizobium strains are preserved in the soil in the fields where this crop has been cultivated for a long time. For example, nodule bacteria of peas, vetch, and forage beans are almost ubiquitous. Inoculation of seeds of these crops with bacterial fertilizers is most often ineffective. Whereas seeds of lupine and soybean sown for the first time in a given field require artificial infection with appropriate rhizobia strains. In the absence of bacteria, nodules are not formed, nitrogen fixation does not occur, and the crop yield is limited to natural soil fertility.

After liming the soils with high doses of lime fertilizers providing a decrease in the pH of the salt extract by 1.5-2 units, inoculation of all legume crops with active rhizobia strains is carried out, since on acidic soils the strains have reduced activity.

One of the frequently used effective preparations is rhizotorfin, a rhizobia culture derived from sterilized peat. 

Treatment of seeds is carried out on the day of sowing or better just before sowing, as the bacteria applied to the surface of the seeds quickly die – already 5-6 hours after treatment their number is reduced by half. If the inoculated seeds were not sown the same day, they are treated again on the day of sowing.

Treatment should be carried out indoors or under a canopy, avoiding direct sunlight, as ultraviolet radiation is destructive to bacteria. For the same reason, sowing is carried out with the seeder boxes closed.

Inoculation is carried out manually or mechanized. When manual treatment, 100-200 kg of seeds are scattered on a tarpaulin and moistened with water with mixing at the rate of 1% by weight of the seeds, powdered with appropriate amount of rhizotorfin and mixed until the preparation is evenly distributed on the surface of the seeds. Using the drug in a suspended form worsens the results.

Mechanized treatment of seeds is carried out by treater machines according to the technology similar to treater treatment. ПУ-15, ПУ-3, ПСШ-3, АС-2, АПЗ-10, ПЗ-10, ПС-10, “Kolos”, “Mobitoks” are suitable for this purpose. Before operation the machine must be cleaned from pesticide residues.

When inoculating and treating seeds with pesticides, consider the following:

  • seed dressing with fentiuram, TMTD and similar preparations shall be carried out in advance, at least 1 month before sowing;
  • treatment with preparations that are less toxic to nodule bacteria, for example, fundozol, BMK and others based on benomyl, can be combined with rhizotorfin treatment on the day of sowing;
  • for better retention of rhizotorfin and protectants on the surface of seeds adhesives are used: bard concentrate (waste from ethanol production) solid or liquid, molasses, flour or starch paste. Doses of adhesive: bard concentrate – 1-1,2 kg, flour or starch paste – 0,5 kg, diluted in 8 liters of water to treat 1 ton of seeds.

Nitrogen

When predicting the provision of legume crops with nitrogen from nitrogen fixation, the compliance of soil acidity with the requirements of the crop, the provision with phosphorus, potassium and trace elements, the presence of spontaneous active strains of nodule bacteria or seed treatment with bacterial fertilizers are taken into account. If these factors are satisfied, you can expect active fixation and high yield of sufficient quality by assimilation of atmospheric nitrogen.

The reliability of the prediction is monitored during the growing season. If 2-3 weeks after sprouting, pink and red nodules were formed on the roots, nitrogen fixation proceeds normally. During flowering and bean formation, when the plants’ need for nitrogen increases, the activity of the symbiotic apparatus should be checked again. By this time, the mass of nodules with light hemoglobin per plant in many crops reaches a maximum. If at this time there are many large red nodules on the roots, the plants are fully supplied with nitrogen. If there are no nodules, they are gray or green, there is no nitrogen fixation.

All legumes make better use of mineral forms of nitrogen than air nitrogen. However, nitrogen fertilizers inhibit nitrogen fixation. Under optimal symbiotic fixation conditions, nitrogen fertilizers are not used. By suppressing symbiosis, they reduce the amount of fixed nitrogen by the amount of assimilated nitrogen fertilizer and do not increase seed production, and high doses of nitrogen fertilizer can lead to its reduction.

On acidic soils where symbiosis is suppressed, mineral nitrogen in the rates of 70-100 kg/ha is applied to obtain a satisfactory yield of peas, fodder beans, narrow-leaved lupine, vetch. In this case it is not possible to obtain a high yield of good quality. Intensification of legume production on such soils consists primarily in liming and creating other favorable conditions for symbiotic activity of nodule bacteria.

Tillage

Main tillage for leguminous crops is similar to tillage for cereal crops. When they are sown after cereals, stubble discing to a depth of 1-8 cm is carried out. In 2 to 3 weeks after discing, autumn plowing on chernozem soils at a depth of 25-27 cm on other soils – to a depth of the arable layer (20-22 cm) using plows with skimmers, such as ПТК-9-35, ПЛП-6-35, ПЛН-4-35.

In case of long warm period after plowing two tillage operations are carried out to destroy weeds by cultivators КПГ-4 or КПС-4.

Presowing tillage includes cultivation, leveling and rolling of soil, for example, with complex units РВК-3, РВК-3,6, РВК-5 or cultivation with harrowing in two tracks at a depth of 8-10 cm by cultivator КПС-4 with harrows БЗСС-1. After cultivation for crops, bringing the seedling to the surface, is carried out packing with ring-spiked rollers СГ-21 or ЗККШ-6. Pre-seeding levelling and rolling allows to provide uniform seeding, uniform emergence of seedlings and plant development, reduce losses at harvesting for seeds of crops with lodging stem.

Preparing seeds for sowing

Seeds of class I and II are used for sowing. 3-4 weeks before sowing, they are treated against root rots and ascochitosis with TMTD at a dose of 3-4 kg/t, with fundozole at 2-3 kg/t, with fenthiuram at 3-4 kg/t. Tachygaren at a dose of 1-2 kg/t is effective against root rot. Treated seeds are treated by machines ПСШ-З, ТСШ-5, ПС-10, “Mobitoks” and АПЗ-10 half-dry with 5 liters of water per 1 ton of seeds. If necessary, seeds are treated with bacterial fertilizers and microfertilizers before sowing.

Timing, sowing methods and seeding rates

The timing, sowing methods and seeding rates are determined by the biological characteristics of the crop and cultivation conditions.

Cold-resistant grain legumes include Pisum arvense, Pisum sativum, and fodder beans. They are sown at the earliest possible time. Delayed sowing of 7-12 days leads to a decrease in their yield by 15-20%.

Warm-loving grain legumes include soybeans and beans. They are sown at a topsoil temperature of 8-12 ° C, usually 10-15 days after the beginning of spring field work.

Seeding rate is determined by location, purpose of cultivation and method of seeding. In areas with sufficient moisture, higher seeding rates are used than in arid areas. With the wide-row method, the rates are less than with the row and narrow-row method, with sowing for green mass, the seeding rate is higher than for seed.

Table. Methods, terms, sowing depth and seeding rates of leguminous crops in the Non-Black Soil Zone[3] Plant breeding/P.P. Vavilov, V.V. Gritsenko, V.S. Kuznetsov et al; Edited by P.P. Vavilov. - M.: Agropromizdat, 1986. - 512 p.: ill. - (Textbook and textbooks for higher education institutions).

Crop
Weight of 1000 seeds, g
Seed rate, mln.
Seeding method
Sowing date
Pisum sativum
150-250
1,0-1,2
Row and narrow-rowEarly
Pisum arvense
150-170
1,0-1,2
Row and narrow-rowEarly
Small-seeded fodder beans
200-450
0,4-0,7
Row (45 cm) and wide-row (60 cm)Early
Lathyrus
160-310
0,9-1,1
Row and narrow-rowEarly
Cicer
160-220
0,6-0,8
Row and wide-row (45 cm)Early
Coarse-seeded lentils
55-65
2,0-2,5
Row and narrow-rowFollowing the sowing of peas
Small-seeded lentils
25-30
2,5-3,0
Row and narrow-rowFollowing the sowing of peas
Vicia sativa
45-86
2,0-2,3
Row and narrow-rowFollowing the sowing of peas
Lupinus angustifolius
150-180
1,1-1,2
Row and narrow-rowFollowing the sowing of peas
Lupine yellow
125-150
1,1-1,2
RowFollowing the sowing of peas
Lupine white
240-450
0,6-0,8
Row and wide-row (45 cm)After sowing early crops
Soybean
100-250
0,4-0,7
Wide-row (45, 60 cm)At a soil temperature of 8-10 °C
Common bean
200-400
0,3-0,5
Wide-row (45, 60 cm)At a soil temperature of 10-12 °C

Crop care

Crop care includes loosening and destruction of soil crust, weed, pest and disease control. Methods are specific for different legumes.

Harvesting

Because of the uneven maturity of the seeds, most legumes are harvested in two phases. First, they are mowed in swaths, and when the mass dries up, they are threshed by combine harvesters adjusted for threshing legume crops. Cicer and soybeans are harvested by direct combining.

Postharvest handling of seeds

After harvesting, seeds are immediately passed through preliminary cleaning machines such as ОВП-20А, ЗАВ-10, ЗАВ-20, К-527. When the moisture content of the seeds less than 17% continue further cleaning and sorting on machines ОС-4,5, СМ-4, К-523 or on grain cleaning complexes ЗАВ, КЗС with additions СПЛ-5 and СП-10.

At humidity over 17% after pre-cleaning they are dried on dryers active ventilation in the unit with air heaters such as ВПТ-400, ВПТ-600, ТАУ-075, ТАУ-1.5 or dryers mine type. During drying, the following regimes are observed:

  • at moisture content of seeds before drying more than 27% – the temperature of the coolant 25 °C;
  • at the humidity of 21-27% – the temperature is 28 °C;
  • at the humidity of 18-21% – the temperature is 32 °C;
  • when the humidity is less than 18% – the temperature is 40 °C.

Mound height should be no more than 50-70 cm. Air flow rate in 1 hour – 1000-1500 m3/t of seeds. Duration of drying at the specified modes of 2-3 days.

Of the mine type dryers used СЗШ-8, СЗШ-16, СЗШ-16Р, Т-662 (GDR), М-819 (Poland).

If capacity of drying units is not enough for the entire batch of wet grain, the excess is placed for temporary storage in floor units or bins of active ventilating БВ-25, БВ-40.

Seeds, dried to condition moisture 13-16% depending on the culture, cleaned and sorted, stored in dry ventilated rooms with a bulk height not exceeding 2.5 m or in bags up to 8 rows high and width not exceeding the length of two bags.

Cultivation for green mass

The maximum yield of green mass of legumes of high quality with the lowest cost is obtained in the cultivation of perennial leguminous grasses in pure crops. However, due to the limited number of such crops, annual legumes are grown to produce green mass used for the production of grass meal, haylage, as animal feed in the summer. Seeds of field peas (Pisum arvense), narrow-leaved lupine (Lupinus angustifolius), vetch (Vicia sativa) and mossy vetch (Vícia villosa) are almost not used in the feed industry, they are grown mainly for green mass. Typical grain crops such as peas (Pisum sativum), fodder beans, lathyrus, soybean, white lupine are also cultivated for green mass.

The agrotechnics of legume crops cultivation for green mass is basically similar to the agrotechnics of cultivation for seeds. Only the rate of seed sowing is increased by 10-15%.

Harvesting for green mass is carried out during the period of complete filling of seeds in the middle beans, when the lower beans begin to turn yellow or brown, the upper beans finish the filling of seeds, and the plants have not yet dropped leaves. When harvested at the flowering stage, most crops accumulate only 30-40% of the maximum possible protein.

Table. Comparative productivity of grain legume crops at harvesting for green mass in different phases of vegetation, 100 kg/ha (G.S. Posypanov, 1982)

Crop
Green mass in the flowering phase of plants
Top bean formation
Full seed run in medium beans
green mass
protein
Fodder-protein units
green mass
protein
Fodder-protein units
Pisum arvense
85
192
4,4
29,5
218
4,7
35,3
Vetch
80
175
3,8
23,3
223
5,9
42,4
Lathyrus
55
168
4,2
22,3
176
4,6
23,7
Pisum sativum
59
155
3,2
22,3
181
3,6
30,2

When there is a need for early harvesting for green mass in the farm it is advisable to sow several types of leguminous crops with different timing of crop formation. The simultaneous onset of the phases of flowering and seed ripening will extend the harvesting of green matter by 40 days with a minimum yield shortfall.

Mixed crops of leguminous crops

Cultivation of cereal crops such as oats, winter rye, corn, and sorghum for green mass is common in farm practice. However, cereal-based feeds contain little protein. For example, green mass of oats contains 2 times less protein than green mass of vetch, the content of digestible protein in the green mass of corn is 2.5 times less than in pea, 3 times less than in soybean, and 3.5 times less than in Lathyrus sativus.

Table. Protein content in green mass of fodder crops and its digestibility, % (M.F. Tomme et al., 1970)

Crop
Content in absolutely dry mass
Digestibility coefficient
Content of digestible protein
crude protein
pure protein
crude protein
pure protein
green mass
Legumes (seed ripening phase)
Lathyrus sativus
23,5
17,1
80
74
18,8
Soybean
21,6
17,3
78
75
16,9
Lupinus albus
21,3
17,8
78
70
16,6
Lupinus luteus
21,0
17,2
78
71
16,3
Vicia sativa
21,0
19,4
77
72
16,2
Pisum sativum
18,9
15,6
75
71
14,2
Vicia villosa
19,3
14,7
69
65
13,3
Pisum arvense
15,6
12,8
76
72
11,9
Forage beans
17,4
11,0
65
70
11,3
Lupinus angustifolius
17,2
11,1
66
60
11,3
Cereals (milky phase) and sunflowers (end of flowering)
Winter rye (beginning of earing)
13,6
12,6
74
60
10,1
Oats
11,0
9,8
71
69
7,8
Sorghum
10,2
7,0
67
57
6,8
Sunflower
10,7
8,5
60
56
6,4
Corn (milky ripeness)
9,3
6,0
58
48
5,4
Mixed crops
Vicia + oats
17,6
11,2
73
62
12,8
Soybean + corn
17,0
15,0
74
71
12,6
Lathyrus + oats
17,1
12,0
77
76
12,3
Peas + oats
15,0
12,0
77
74
11,6
Winter vetch + rye
15,9
12,1
71
63
11,3
Peas + corn
13,8
10,0
74
71
10,2

Growing legumes in mixed crops with cereal crops increases the amount of protein in the green mass, digestibility and digestibility of cereal protein. For example, green mass of oats contains 7.8% of digestible protein, while the mixture of oats and vetch contains 1.6 times more. Adding soybeans to corn crops increases the content of digestible protein by 2.3 times.

Protein content of legume-grass mixtures is determined by the ratio of components. For example, if the proportion of vetch in a vetch-oat mixture is 55-60% and oats 40-45% by mass, the digestible protein content of the mixture reaches 14%, and if vetch in the mixture is only 20-30%, the protein content of the mixture does not exceed 9%.

Plant protection system

Disease control preparations

Fusarium root rot in pea – Phytosporin-M (titer not less than 2 billion living cells and spores/g Bacllus subtilis, strain 26D), application rate – 10 l/t for pre-sowing treatment of seeds.

Pea rust and powdery mildew – Alto (e.g. ciproconazole, 400 g/l), application form – spraying during vegetation.

Ascochytosis, rust, powdery mildew, chocolate leaf spot – Rex Duo (a.s. thiophanamethyl, 310 g/l and epoxiconazole, 187 g/l), application form – spraying during vegetation.

Sources

V.V. Kolomeychenko. Horticulture/Textbook. – Moscow: Agrobiznesentr, 2007. – 600 с. ISBN 978-5-902792-11-6.

Horticulture/P.P. Vavilov, V.V. Gritsenko. Vavilov. ed. by P.P. Vavilov, V.S. Kuznetsov et al. – M.: Agropromizdat, 1986. – 512 p.: ill. – (Textbook and Tutorials for Higher Education Institutions).

Fundamentals of agricultural production technology. Farming and plant growing. Ed. by V.S. Niklyaev. – Moscow: “Bylina”. 2000. – 555 с.