Lenssen Joins ISU Soybean Research Team
Andrew “Andy” Lenssen joined Iowa State University (ISU) on October 1 to fill the position of Extension soybean specialist.
He has more than 18 years experience leading collaborative, multidisciplinary team projects investigating intensified, diversified cropping systems and their influences on wheat, pulse, oilseeds, corn and annual forage crops. He has studied productivity and quality, water nitrogen use and balances and weeds, insects and diseases, as well as potential environmental and economic benefits.
“I’m very much looking forward to working in soybean systems in Iowa,” says Lenssen. “Iowa State University has as an excellent set of people working in soybean research and Extension, including soybean breeding and genetics, nematology, plant physiology, soil fertility, plant pathology, entomology, and agricultural engineering, along with numerous other areas.
“Collaborative efforts are required to make substantial gains in soybean field and landscape scale productivity,” he says. “By combining efforts of university soybean workers with Iowa producers and producer groups such as the Iowa Soybean Association (ISA), and USDA-ARS scientists, the soybean specialist position provides tremendous opportunities to better understand and improve current and future soybean production systems and extend research results to growers, grower groups, and industry.”
Prior to his arrival at ISU, Lenssen was with USDA-ARS in Sidney, Montana, as lead scientist for dryland research. Prior to his work in Sidney, he was with the Department of Entomology at Montana State University.
An important part of his program has been to extend research results to growers and the agricultural industry, and increase adoption rates of improved management and crop production practices.
Lenssen has three degrees in agronomy, a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University and MS and PhD degrees from Kansas State University. Prior to entering graduate school, he managed an irrigated farm and ranch with cow-calf and stocker operations in New Mexico.
According to Dr. David Wright, director of contract research for the Iowa Soybean Association, Dr. Lenssen’s work will be critical to increasing the productivity of soybeans in Iowa.
“Given the speed at which Iowa’s climate is changing, and the diverse effect of the environment on the growth and development of soybeans, it’s important to consider the interactive effects of extreme weather conditions and other stressors like SCN and aphid,” says Wright. “Dr. Lenssen will lead checkoff-funded research to help understand how to manage these multiple stresses to minimize yield loss.”