Seed accounts for up to 20% of variable production costs for peanut. Seed costs are especially high for larger seeded varieties such as Georgia-06G and Florida-07 where 140 pounds per acre seed may be needed to attain the recommended seeding rate of 6 seed per foot of row.
In irrigated peanuts, seeding rate has also been shown to influence damage attributed to disease. Intensification of tomato spotted wilt (TSW) has been associated with declining seed rates, while white mold worsens with increasing seed rates.
Planting date and variety selection also can greatly influence disease intensity in irrigated peanut. Early planted peanuts are more vulnerable to TSW and white mold, while leaf spot diseases are more damaging in later planted peanuts.
The impact of seeding rate of 3, 4, 6, and 8 seed per foot on yield of Georgia-09B, Georgia-06G, and Georgia-12Y as well as the occurrence of tomato spotted wilt (TSW), leaf spot diseases, and stem rot were evaluated in 2014 and 2015 under rainfed conditions.
Due to low TSW pressure, disease incidence was not impacted by either planting date, seeding rate, or variety selection. The influence of planting date on leaf spot incidence differed by year where higher leaf spot ratings were noted on all varieties at the May than April planting dates in 2014 but not in 2015 when Georgia-09B but not the two other varieties suffered greater leaf spot damage at the April than May planting date.
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Also, leaf spot intensity rose with increasing seeding rates. While stem rot incidence was similarly low in 2014 for all varieties both planting dates, Georgia-09B and Georgia-06G had greater white mold indices at the 1st than 2nd DOP in 2015.
White mold damage was consistently lower on Georgia-12Y than Georgia-06G or Georgia-09B. White mold intensified with increasing seeding rate on the latter two but not the former variety.
Greater yields were recorded in 2015 than 2014. Similar yields, which averaged about 3050 pounds per acre, were recorded for all varieties. Yields, which differed by planting date and seeding rate, were greater at 3 than 6 and 8 seed/row feet for later April planting but were not influenced by seeding rate at the May planting date. Yields were lower in the May planting, regardless of seeding rate, compared with all seeding rates at the April planting.