Drought Monitor and Rainfall Effects on Cotton

Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist
By Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist July 13, 2012 16:01

Drought Monitor and Rainfall Effects on Cotton

Much needed rainfall has been received over the past week to ten days in many areas of the state; however, there are several areas that remain at a moisture deficit.  Rainfall in some areas of the state has exceeded 8” in the past week to ten days.  Although a significant portion of our acreage experienced a prolonged period of dry weather during the middle to later parts of June, Mississippi generally has faired better than many states across the Cotton Belt.  The map below shows natural disaster areas due to drought conditions.  Over 1000 counties (61% of the lower 48 states) have been declared natural disaster areas following the worst drought in a quarter century.

 

Cotton is in a wide range of growth and development throughout the state.  Some cotton has been observed that is at 20 nodes with 7 to 8 nodes above white flower with outstanding retention.  However, other cotton can be found that is 15 to 17 nodes with 3 to 4 nodes above white flower with average to below average retention.  Several questions have come in this week regarding cotton growth and development after the rainfall.  For cotton that is three to four nodes above while flower or less, the addition of additional nodes and fruiting sites is unlikely.  Five nodes above white flower is generally considered to be cut out; however, given adequate moisture and good growing conditions this cotton may ride at five nodes above white flower for one to two weeks.  Some reports of shed have already began to come in and more will likely come in over the next week to ten days.  If you do see fruit shed begin to occur in fields that are not cut out, that field will likely begin to produce vegetative growth and will likely need to be moderated to some degree with plant growth regulator application.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist
By Darrin Dodds, Extension Cotton Specialist July 13, 2012 16:01
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