This is our final issue of AgFax Southeast Cotton for the year. Many thanks to our exclusive sponsor, AMVAC. We are grateful to Extension workers, crop advisers, dealer reps and others who took the time to offer insight and expertise into this year’s cotton crop. Many thanks to our readers who keep opening the AgFax enewsletters.
The Southeast is nearing the end of a late season. With stink bugs and other pests still lingering, growers anticipate defoliation.
Scott Graham, Extension Entomologist, Auburn University:
“We really took a big hit statewide with all the rains last week. We had prolonged cloudy weather and cotton isn’t looking too great. We’re seeing some boll rot. It’s not the best start to defoliation and harvest. We do have a good forecast for the next week or so.
“I talked to some people along the Gulf Coast, and they are still spraying stink bugs in the latest planted cotton, the June cotton. But for the most part, we’re done with pests in most of Alabama.
“Soybeans have some stink bugs and defoliating caterpillars and there’s some places they still can’t get in the fields yet from the rain.
“Other than that, there’s not much to report. Hopefully we can get a good harvest. It looks like we have good yield potential, all things considered. We just have to get it out.”
Brandon Phillips, Phillips Ag Services, LLC, Fitzgerald, Georgia:
“The cotton hasn’t moved much from last week to this week. In saying that, when it dries up, we’ll be in full swing defoliating. We are still having to monitor stink bugs and white flies, mostly. There are a couple fields we will probably end up spraying for white flies next week. It’s not a significant problem, though. We will probably start defoliating a lot of cotton maybe Friday or Saturday, but definitely Monday. We will be knocking off leaves and defoliating soon.
“The yield potential is good, but not excellent. Some fields lost fertilizer, got saturated or have boll rot.
“Looking at next year, we are dreading fertilizers prices as they keep going up. It just isn’t looking good compared to the commodity prices. The reality is the logistics of all of it makes this hard. There will probably be product shortages. There is talk of Roundup doubling in price. Pot ash is already skyrocketing and getting too expensive. Maybe once we start trickling to about a dollar for cotton, we can make it work, but until then we’re just struggling.
“In the peanuts, we’re on the front end of digging. It looks like the majority of what we planted will come off closer to 150. I’m very glad my growers put out an extra spray for leaf spot because we have perfect conditions for that right now. We are still dealing with a few velvet bean caterpillars here and there. In the morning, it’s supposed to be 54 degrees, and peanuts come to a complete stop in weather like that. They just don’t mature in that weather.
“I think we still have a great crop; most of our growers stayed ahead of the diseases. You can tell the growers who used a “Cadillac” fungicide treatment versus the ones who used an average or below-average treatment. Even the crops on a lower-tier regiment still look great.”