North Carolina Cotton: On-Farm Fiber Quality Results for 2018

Fiber Quality results for the 2018 NC On-Farm Cotton Variety Evaluation Program are now in. In addition to yield, fiber quality is an important component to the value and marketability of cotton in our state and should be considered when selecting varieties. The table in the link below illustrates the average fiber quality values for each variety across all on-farm trials in 2018.

Parameters include lint percentage, micronaire (MIC), fiber length (LEN), fiber strength (STR), length uniformity (UI), HVI color grade, and leaf grade. Also listed in this table is the percentage of trials in which a variety resulted in premium micronaire, premium and low strength, and premium and low uniformity.

In this table, varieties are ranked in descending order according to lint percentage (noticeably different from yield ranking). During the 2018 season, essentially all of the varieties evaluated displayed excellent fiber quality in some regard, however, there were clear differences in fiber quality among these varieties across environments.

It is important to note that the environment and season can greatly influence fiber quality, more-so than genetics in some years, therefore growers should understand that varieties with tendencies for poor quality in some parameters, may not necessarily result in poor quality, and vice versa. Variety decisions are largely made based on yield potential and stability, however, it is important to evaluate a variety’s fiber characteristics to avoid discounts for low quality when possible, and perhaps secure a premium for high lint quality.

The good news for 2018 is that quality was high for all of the varieties in the program, despite prolonged and intense drought stress during late June and early July. There was never an incident of discount high micronaire or short fiber for any variety. The incidence of premium micronaire was noticeably higher in 2018 than normal.

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While premiums for fiber length are dependent on color/leaf grades, essentially all varieties in all environments were above base for the average color grade. Additionally, there was a rather high incidence of premium strength and uniformity for many of the varieties in 2018.

These results are a true testament to NC cotton producers, as well as all of our seed companies and ginners, all of whom are dedicated to producing high-quality cotton and remaining competitive in the global marketplace.

Yield and fiber quality results from the NC State University OVT program will be available very soon on this site, so please stay tuned for those results!! We strongly encourage growers to closely observe data from both the on-farm program and OVT when making cotton variety decisions.

Results from the on-farm program along with OVT will be discussed in much greater detail during the upcoming winter meetings, so be sure to attend one near you. Also, we want to again reiterate our appreciation to the NC Cotton Producers Association, N.C. Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, NC State University, Cotton Incorporated, and Seed Companies for their efforts and support of this program for the benefit of all NC cotton growers, as well the diligence and hard work that our county agents, consultants, and cooperating growers put into this program during 2018.

This program was a huge success again in 2018 due to the efforts of all involved and we look forward to another year of this program in 2019!!

2018 On-Farm Cotton Variety Fiber Quality Results


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