Impact of Varying Planting Dates and Irrigation Regimes on Cotton Growth and Lint Yield Production
- William T. Pettigrew *a
aUSDA-ARS, Crop Production Systems Research Unit, P.O. Box 350, Stoneville, MS 38776. Trade names are necessary to report factually on available data, however, the USDA neither guarantees nor warrants the standard to the product or service, and the use of the name by USDA implies no approval of the product or service to the exclusion of others that may also be suitable
Yield enhancements can be obtained in the Mississippi Delta by planting irrigated cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) during the first week of April rather than the first week of May. Because some late season drought stress is avoided, early planting might also work for dryland production. Objectives were to compare the performance of early and normal planted cotton while grown under both irrigated and dryland conditions. Six cotton cultivars were planted in the field at Stoneville, MS during either the first week of April (Early) or the first week of May (Normal) in 2005 to 2008. Half the plots were irrigated and half were dryland. Dry matter partitioning, light interception, flowering, lint yield, yield components, and fiber quality data were collected. With the exception of the hurricane-plagued season of 2005, irrigation increased lint yield regardless of planting date. In 2006 and 2007, early planting increased lint yield by 13% under irrigated conditions, but not dryland conditions. Early planting decreased dryland lint yield by 35% in 2008 but not under irrigated conditions. Fiber from normal planted cotton was 5% stronger than from those early planted. Both early planting and dryland conditions had a propensity to increase the short fiber content. Based on the 4 yr of this research, early planting appears to need irrigation to achieve its yield benefits, which implies that dryland Mississippi Delta cotton producers should not adopt an early planting production strategy.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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