Cotton Planting Progress

Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist
By Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist May 4, 2012 22:25

Cotton planting has progressed at a rapid pace and we are well ahead of the five year average for percent planted acres for the first week of May. Nearly 40% of intended cotton plantings were complete at the beginning of the week and significant progress has been made over the past five or six days. Showers throughout much of the state were welcomed this past Wednesday as many were beginning to run out of moisture. In some situations, the decision was made to continue planting in hopes of a timely rain; however, some were beginning to slow down planting activities until soil moisture conditions improved. Cotton acres in Mississippi will decrease in 2012. Although the extent of this reduction will not be fully realized for a few more weeks, several factors have played into this reduction. Slightly lower cotton prices combined with increased prices for corn, and particularly soybeans, are certainly having a significant effect on intended plantings.

Given the environmental conditions we have had to date, cotton planted into adequate moisture has emerged rapidly. Rapid cotton emergence combined with windy conditions has made getting non-selective herbicides such as Gramoxone applied prior to crop emergence difficult in some cases. As a result, some growers are making earlier than planned applications of Liberty to Liberty Link and/or Widestrike cotton in order to control emerged pigweeds. In cases where pigweeds have not emerged yet, early applications of residual herbicides are being planned in place of those that were intended to be made preemergence. Regardless of your situation, if glyphosate resistant pigweeds are not controlled prior to Roundup Ready Flex cotton emergence, your control options become very limited very quickly.

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Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist
By Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist May 4, 2012 22:25
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