Texas Blacklands Cotton: Rain Delays Corn Harvest; Cotton Finishing Nicely

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Most places in the Blacklands got at least an inch of rain last week and over the weekend. Thankfully we don’t have very high chances of rain for the next 10 days, so we can resume corn harvest and be ready for defoliation.  

Cotton should finish out bolls nicely with the extra moisture. We’re just hoping we don’t get a repeat of last year, when we had constant rains starting mid-August through September. Some plants on turn rows already have a cracked boll on the lower branches, while others still have white flowers blooming out the top.

Spider mites are still spreading in some fields but most cotton is no longer in danger of yield loss from them. Similarly, stink bugs and leaffooted bugs can still be seen hanging out in the fields but they won’t be causing any more yield damage.

Cotton aphids can still be a nuisance at this point and moving forward, but only if there are enough of them to produce honeydew that makes the lint sticky.

Now is a great time to observe fields for hotspots of cotton root rot. Keep those spots in mind for future seasons, and consider TopGuard treatments in fields that are harder hit. Symptoms of root rot are obvious right now, as dead, brown plants can be seen clearly amid the green. Plants affected by root rot will die suddenly, within 2-3 days after showing symptoms, even after growing well and putting on a good boll load.

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