Texas West Plains IPM: Cotton, Peanuts, Pesticide Training

Herbicide nozzle on Rogator sprayer. ©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography


I am coming around to having a more optimistic outlook for some of our area cotton production. If we receive some measurable precipitation I will remain optimistic. 

In fact, you may need to add to your “to do” list an application of PGR if you have not already done so. Between many now having their fertilizer in place, and irrigation water going just a bit further, cotton plants are making good progress in growth. I would hate to get behind this growth curve. So, I would like to see much of this cotton have 12-16 oz before we get to far into bloom.

Cotton ranges from 6 leaf stage to 15 true leaves with square set good at +80%. The scouts have seen a few blooms already, but we are not seeing 50% of the plants blooming in a field yet to consider it in bloom. I do anticipate seeing a blooming filed by the end of the weekend (July 8). Much of the cotton fields will not reach bloom until after July 22.

The crop has made excellent progress over the last few days since we have had some light rain showers and not as high of temperatures. Obviously there have been major hurdles to get to this point and most likely some of those will continue. Just a few acres are just now nearing bloom. These fields will be going into bloom with a range of 7-9 nodes above white flower (NAWF).

Insect pests remain very quiet. In the IPM Scouting Program we have noted only a few stink bugs, only an occasional fleahopper and no Lygus. Beneficials numbers are surprisingly good in some fields; though limited food source is available.

Weeds seem to be the most dominate pest currently. A long varied list of weed species noted throughout all three counties. If you need help identifying a weed and coming up with a control plan give me a call. Remember, these weeds serve as host to many of our cotton pests.


Peanuts continue to bloom with pegging and pod set going strong. We are about 7-14 days ahead of where we were at last year at this same time.

Irrigation is critical at this point in peanuts. It is critical not only for the plant to grow but also it creates an environment which is conducive for peg penetration of soil. If soil surface is too hot and dry pegs will not develop properly, and hence no pod. I have noted only an occasional foliage feeding larvae. I have not seen much in the way of pathogens. The dry environment has helped suppress the incidence of foliar diseases so far.

Private Pesticide Applicators Training 2018 Cochran, Hockley and Lamb Counties

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service will offer the required private Pesticide Applicators Training (PAT) in Morton, Levelland and Littlefield throughout 2018. This training is required by Texas Department of Agriculture before taking the exam for obtaining the license.  

A private pesticide applicator is a person who uses or supervises the use of a restricted-use or state limited-use pesticide or a regulated herbicide for the purpose of producing an agricultural commodity.

This license is not for those receiving monetary compensation for a pesticide application.

To participate in a training individuals must call 806-894-3159 by 3pm the day prior (Wednesday) to the trainings in Levelland; or 806-266-5215 by 3pm the day prior to any trainings in Morton. The trainings will begin promptly at 1pm at the Extension Offices (see addresses below). There is a $60 fee for training materials. This is only the required training. Testing will be conducted at a separate time and location. Future PAT Trainings:

  • July 24 Morton Extension Office 200 W. Taylor Avenue
  • August 16 Levelland Extension Office 1212 Houston Street
  • Sept 13 Levelland Extension Office 1212 Houston Street
  • October 23 Morton Extension Office 200 W. Taylor Avenue
  • Nov 29 Levelland Extension Office 1212 Houston Street

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