Planting Progress

Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist
By Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist May 13, 2011 16:21

Tremendous headway was made this week with regard to cotton planting.  Planters started moving late last week as well as over the weekend.  By Monday, planting activities for several crops were well underway throughout the state.  While flooding is of major concern in many areas of the Delta, rainfall that moved through the state today was welcomed by many.  Up to 2.5″ has been reported from the north Delta while those in south Mississippi remain very dry.

Rhizoctonia (also known as soreshin) has damaged some cotton that was planted in April.  Rhizoctonia is a soil borne fungus and is characterized by dark, sunken areas of the stem near the soil line.  The stem may be girdled from this disease which weakens the stem and can ultimately lead to death of the seedling.  Although the amount of cotton planted in April was small, determining the lasting effects of seedling disease and making re-plant decisions are often difficult, regardless of the number of acres affected.  Favorable weather conditions over the past week have alleviated some concerns where soreshin was present.

Several calls have been received this week regarding use patterns of fluometuron (Cotoran, etc.) at planting.  Cotoran use has declined dramatically since the introduction of Roundup Ready® and Roundup Ready Flex® cotton.  However, as the glyphosate-resistant pigweed situation has grown increasingly worse, there has been a lot of interest in this product this year.  Although absolute safety can never be guaranteed when dealing with preemergence (PRE) herbicides, Cotoran is one of the safest options available when considering PRE applications.  As with any PRE, rainfall is needed for activation and maximum efficacy.  However, once cotton begins cracking the soil surface, Cotoran applications should not be made.  Although Cotoran is labeled for postemergence application to cotton greater than 3” tall, broadcast applications are not advised and should only be made in a salvage situation.  Directed applications to cotton greater than 3” tall, but prior to weed emergence can be made as long as care is taken to avoid contact with cotton tissue. 

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Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist
By Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist May 13, 2011 16:21
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