West Texas Cotton: Insects Quiet, Weed Control the Order of the Day


    Widespread rain events this last week, and possibly more to come over the next few days. No complaints here. I know we need to get some weeds sprayed, fertilizer out, and keep things tied down from blowing, but this rain has done wonders for most everything including us.


    Based on the IPM Scouting Program cotton is averaging 7.5 total nodes (range 2 to 10 on original stands); the 1st fruiting branch at 7 (range 5-8); 96% (range 72-100%) square retention of 1st position; node length is 0.7″ (range of 0.5″-1.1″), and plant populations average 32,100 per acre (range 18,400 to 46,000.

    Based on current plant mapping data, and anticipating we go into bloom with 8 nodes above white flower, we should generally begin bloom around July 22nd. With a last effective bloom date of August 20, that gives us a full month for effective blooming. The young, replanted cotton will be behind this pattern.

    Weed control has been the order of the day for the past several days. It has been a challenge to find a calm day. Liberty herbicide has worked very well this season with good moisture and humidity. The dicamba products seem to be doing well also, with the exception on too large of weeds. I would highly suggest you include a pre-emerge herbicide with your layby treatment for residual control.

    Cotton fleahopper numbers continue to remain very low. Here is an excellent publication from Dr. Suhas Vyahare, Extension Cotton Entomologist, Lubbock.

    Also, below is of a video I made a couple years ago which may be of help.

    Lygus have not been detected in cotton, only a few in weeds. A few individual cotton aphids have been noted this week. No worms have been found. Grasshoppers have been found and are a concern for those near pastures and rangeland. Call for more information.


    Peanuts are doing very well. Most all fields are blooming and are very near pegging. You must decide now if you have good nodulation which will fix nitrogen. If it is not sufficient (>10 nodules per plant) then you will need to supplement or supply all the nitrogen needed. Weed control remains as pest priority number one. Do pay attention to crown and foliar disease possibilities. If you cultivate do not pitch soil to plant.


    Grains range from just planted to tasseling corn. Limited whorl feeding by larvae pest so far has been noted in most area fields. To-date no sugarcane aphids have been detected. Be vigilant though, and scout on a regular basis.

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