Tom Studnicka, Studnicka Consulting, Belle Plaine, Kansas:
“Due to wet, cool weather, only 50 to 55% of the cotton my guys wanted to plant actually got planted. Out of that, probably 30% has been abandoned and they switched to soybeans. We just didn’t get the cotton stands. There was one good planting window followed by 10 to 12 inches of rain. A lot just didn’t make it.
“For remaining cotton, the earlier stuff is just now starting to square. But most fields range from cotyledon to 4-leaf. Overall, the later planted crop doesn't look too bad. We're just behind.
“Weeds are a major issue. The forecast looks like we’ll have a good window for a week or so. Everyone should be able to catch up on herbicide and insecticide applications. Fortunately, with warmer weather cotton has been growing fast enough that thrips have not been a major issue. I’m also not seeing any major issues with fleahoppers on the earlier cotton.
“Soybean stands are adequate, but they’re off to a slow start. Wheat harvest is ready to begin where guys can find dry fields. Yields will probably be in the 30s to 40s, an average crop at best.”
Kyle Aljoe, Crop Quest Consulting, Dimmitt, Texas:
“Things are shaping back up after hail damage last week. We have warmer temperatures and fields are actually starting to look like cotton after all of the cool weather. I’ve probably lost 25 to 30% of the cotton I watch. There was not enough heat.
“Growers came back with corn on irrigated or limited irrigated fields. Others replanted dryland or limited irrigated sorghum. Many decided to take the insurance and lay it out. We didn't receive the rainfall they had north of Amarillo, so we don't have a good profile. Fields that were replanted are starting to look pretty good. We’re now spraying for weeds. Thankfully, we’re not seeing much insect pressure.
“Forage sorghum, corn for silage and field corn are looking good after being hit with hail last week. We just started harvesting irrigated wheat. Dryland wheat harvest began last week. Dryland yields are not too bad, with 20 to 25 bushels per acre where wheat didn't get grazed out.”
David Kerns, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Professor and Statewide IPM Coordinator, College Station:
“Cotton has really come along the last 2 weeks. Wet weather slowed down fleahopper treatments. They were relentless, but numbers have dropped considerably.
“Most of the crop in my area isn't blooming but it’s close. We have a huge bollworm egg lay ongoing. Since cotton is not blooming, I expect to see little worm survivorship even in the dual gene Bt varieties, but I have noted some square feeding in dual gene cotton already.
“South of us where cotton is well into bloom, producers are definitely having issues with bollworms injuring Bt cotton. Even a few reports in Vip cotton varieties with some requiring treatment. Larvae are surviving long enough to cause fruit damage, but do not appear to be able to develop into late instars. One Vip variety field was reported to have suffered 20% square loss to worms. That’s an issue. New Bt technologies targeting bollworms are years away from being released.”
Seth Byrd, Oklahoma State University Extension Cotton Specialist, Stillwater/Altus:
“We’ve had better weather the last 5 to 6 days, with less rain and warmer temperatures. It was in the 100s late last week. We’ve seen scattered showers, but no all-day rains.
“Everything in the southwestern part of the state is in various stages. One problem is stand establishment. Some are decent as far as good emergence, but the bigger problem is small plants and slow growth. We’re not seeing this crop take off because we haven’t had the good growing conditions.
“We’ve had thrips pressure. Insecticide applications have been pretty common. We need to keep scouting for thrips and then start looking for squares that attract fleahoppers, plant bugs and other insects.
“Many rotary hoes ran last week to break up the crust after the recent rains. That’s been a weekly thing since it was planted. Guys in the Altus region do a very good job of incorporating preplant herbicide applications with residuals. You really see the value of those types of programs with clean fields.”