Virginia Cotton: Managing Pix and Plant Bugs

©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

Three consecutive days of temperatures into the mid-90’s are going to make any rainfall we get quite welcomed between now and Wednesday or Thursday.

  • Cotton fields that were not pounded with rainfall several weeks ago seem to be growing pretty well.
  • We are still in the middle of weed control layby programs and nitrogen management, and the new questions are related to Pix, along with increased interest in plantbug management.
  • First of all, the Pix dilemma is one we tend to live with as cotton producers. Generally we like to get Pix product applied to cotton prior to bloom whenever favorable growth conditions exist.
  • Only this time of year, you need some rain about every 7 to 10 days to maintain favorable growth conditions. We usually don’t make any mistakes on the front side as most farmers do not use a full rate prior to bloom just in case the rain cuts off.
  • Plant bugs are also part of the conversation now. Fruit retention is the only concern prior to bloom and you have to lose 20% or more of the squares to justify treatment. Most Virginia fields usually maintain more than 90% of the squares prior to bloom, but we need to look.
  • Most of the concern for plantbug damage is going to increase once cotton begins to bloom.
  • If you are finding 20% square loss, the addition of AdmirePro or some variant as a simple addition to pix is very cheap and fairly effective prior to bloom.
  • Neonics are not as effective nor are they labeled after cotton starts blooming good.

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