Bad news on the pigweed front: Roundup-resistant Palmer amaranth/pigweed has probably been found in Virginia, according to David Holshouser, Extension Agronomist. Most pigweed in the state is below the James River, he said in this week's AgFax: Southern Grain report. Several growers in southwest Georgia are running pressurized wicking applicators to try to clean up pigweed escapes. It continues to be the main crop pest in many areas this season. Several weed scientists have told us in the last year that they now see Roundup as pretty much a tankmix partner, not a solution. Hard to argue with that.
Variable, spotty showers are sustaining the crop in some areas and helping supplement irrigation. But portions of the South remain dry, and no significant, regional weather systems have developed in the last week.
High temperatures developed in Texas during the last week, disrupting several days of fruiting. Up until now, the state has had relatively mild weather this season.
Insects are being treated in places.
Alabama Peanut Pest Alert, 7-13: Insect counts from IPM pheromone traps.
Georgia Seminole Crop E News, 7-13: Conditions very favorable for development of white mold.
Georgia Peanut Rx: Fungicide guide.
Peanuts end up 0.8 cents for most recent reporting period.
Rusty Harris, Worth County Extension Agent, Sylvester, Ga.: "People have mostly gotten Cadre out, and they’re in the spray mode for fungicides now. Otherwise, things are quiet. We had been irrigating pretty heavily and finally got some rain last week, from 1.5 to 3 inches across the county."
Alan Blaine, Southern Ag Consulting, Starkville, Miss.: "We’re close to wrapping up weed control on the latest-planted peanuts. This sure has been a spread-out crop in terms of planting dates. We’re starting to pick up some leaf spot in north Mississippi, something we haven’t had to deal with much in the past. But we found a pretty good flush in our oldest peanuts, even after all the dry weather. It came on pretty quick, too, and we had to play catch-up on fungicides. We were certainly hoping not to get into a regimented fungicide program like they have in Georgia, but we’ll at least have to start considering all our options. This happened in our oldest peanuts, which also have fuller canopies and are some of our best looking ones, too. They’re at about 75 days. We’re now in a preventive mode. We’re finding some cutworm activity but nothing that warrants spraying yet."
Wes Briggs, Briggs Crop Services, Inc., Bainbridge, Ga.: "Mark Mitchell (Mitchell Ag Consulting, Inc., Bainbridge) has peanuts that are a little older than ours, and he’s spraying worms in some of those fields. There’s a mix of tobacco budworms, corn earworms and fall armyworms. We don’t have treatable levels yet (7/13) but likely will reach that point in 7 to 10 days. We’re still dealing with pigweed. Some farms are pretty clean, others are really bad. We’re running pressurized rope-wick applicators in a number of places to try to kill any of it that’s above the crop. We can probably make 2 rounds in peanuts. But because cotton is so much bigger by the time the weed gets above the canopy, there’s less chance that we can made a second run at it."
Ames Herbert, Virginia Extension Entomologist: "Potato leaf hopper is about the only thing out there in peanuts right now (7/14). We’re getting calls, mainly people questioning what they can use that won’t flare spider mites. The short answer is, ‘nothing.’ Anything that might work on potato leaf hoppers will increase the risk of flaring mites. We urge people to be conservative with these sprays and stick to our leaf hopper guidelines. Seeing 10% to 15% hopper burn isn’t enough to justify spraying. The guidelines call for 20% to 25% damage with hoppers still present. This is a very mobile pest, and they frequently damage peanuts and then move on, so there’s no point in spraying if they’re not present. We’re getting questions, too, about using Lorsban on Southern corn root worms. In some of these dry, sandy soils I’m not sure you’ll find many root worms right now, anyway. And treating for them, like treating for leaf hoppers, increases the risk of flaring mites."
Clyde Smith, Regional IPM Agent, Jackson County, Fla.: "Peanuts are doing pretty well. The hot temperatures earlier slowed them down some. Most of this crop was planted within a tight window, and trying to figure out how to harvest it all at the right time is going to be a challenge. A pretty big percentage was planted in June, so it’s a later crop, too. With the high temperatures, we had a period when peanuts didn’t peg, even if the vine was pushing out. We’re just doing the typical fungicide applications right now. I haven’t seen anything in the way of insects that would need to be treated. We’ve been doing pretty well lately on rain. In this county we did miss the rain yesterday (7/13), but parts of the western panhandle caught some. We’re not soggy-wet here, but we’re not hurting, either."
Todd A. Baughman, Texas Extension Peanut Specialist, Vernon, Texas: "Up until last week, I was estimating the crop was running 2 to 3 weeks ahead. Growing conditions had been extremely favorable, and peanuts were progressing. But last week we hit several days of heat that really hammered things. We were generally hot across the whole state, over 100, and the high reached 108 in the Vernon area at one point – not the heat index but the actual temperature. We had highs well over 100 for 2 to 3 days in numerous areas. Where the bloom already was set, it stood a better chance of being okay as long as the top layer of soil was moist enough to get the peg into the ground. But we still lost some of the developing blooms. We’re not completely unaccustomed to gaps in the fruiting pattern. It’s not something you want to see, of course, but we’ll still be in pretty good shape if everything shifts into a more normal pattern. If this kind of weather sets in for a prolonged period, though, it will hurt. We have to mostly build our crop here on irrigation, and it makes me nervous when we do get that much heat. Our production area in south Texas is still extremely hot and dry, and the most recent rain they saw was sometime last summer. We’re going on with the preventive pod rot treatment on our earliest peanuts. They’re hitting that 75-day window now. Our acreage is down significantly, so most of our peanuts are on better fields with good rotation histories and better water, and we shouldn’t expect many pod rot problems this year. So, some guys are holding off on fungicides because of that."
John Beasley, Georgia Extension Agronomist, Tifton, Ga.: "We still continue to receive isolated rainfall, although it would be great to have some widespread systems. I drove to Panama City this week for the Southern peanut grower conference and took different routes going down and returning. The thing I noticed was how clean a large portion of our crop is. There were fields here and there with weed problems, but most of the crop was relatively weed-free. While talking with growers and consultants at the conference, I didn’t hear much about insect problems, just isolated things. For mid July, I don’t think we could be in much better shape with the crop than we are right now. But we do have this huge variability in planting dates, from fields at 80 to 90 days to some that are 2 to 3 weeks old. We’ve got a 70-day-plus spread in planting dates compared to a more normal 30 to 40 days. These younger ones need to go weed-free for 6 weeks from planting to eliminate yield-limiting competition. After that, weed management is mostly just a matter of catching escapes here and there. For fields just at 2 weeks, you’ve got to stay on top of weed management into August."
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