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Growers are interested in standardizing row spacing across crops. This would help to: optimize grain yields and production systems, maintain the viability and yield potential of cotton, and allow easier growth control in cotton. This trial was initiated in response to grower questions about various cotton row spacing options and configurations.
A demonstration trial was conducted in 2011 at the Monsanto Learning Center near Scott, Mississippi to compare 3065533;?, 2:1 skip row planting systems to 3865533;? solid row planting systems in cotton. The trial evaluated multiple cotton varieties at different plant populations.
Five cotton varieties, with maturities ranging from early to late, were planted on April 19, 2011 and harvested in late September. Three plant populations were used and are shown in Table 1. Agronomic management, in general, was similar to the local standard. The exceptions to this were seeding rate and the rates and timing of plant growth regulator (PGR) application(s). PGR (4.2% mepiquat chloride; .35 lb. active ingredient per gallon) was applied as needed per label recommendations on three different dates (Table 2). In an effort to allow for larger, more vegetative, plants which are able to compensate for the skipped row, PGR applications were delayed in the skip row planting systems. In addition, the PGR rates were as much as 50% lower in the 2:1 skip row planting systems compared to the 3865533;? solid row plantings. This compensation is critical in the 2:1 skip row planting configuration to help achieve yield potentials that are competitive with the 3865533;? solid row configurations.
Plant height and yield data were both collected from the trial. Table 3 lists plant height and yield data by variety, plant population, and row configuration.
Across populations, plant heights were similar even with reduced amounts of PGR in the 2:1 skip row plantings. This indicates a potential for less intense agronomic management in a 2:1 skip row planting scenario. However, monitoring and appropriate management will still be necessary. In addition, locally adapted varieties appear to do well in both row configuration planting systems. Growers should consider these factors when selecting varieties and/or production systems. The use of a 2:1 skip row planting system in cotton production could allow for advantages over solid row systems and be compatible with grain crops on 3065533;? rows.
Contrary to some popular beliefs, this protocol demonstrates it may not be the case that 2:1 skip row plantings could save seed and technology fees for Genuity® Bollgard II® Cotton with Roundup Ready® Flex Cotton because less seed is planted. In this study, three plant populations were evaluated for yield potential in both the 2:1 skip and solid planted system. All planted populations in the 2:1 skip row pattern resulted in denser finished stands due to the increased seeding rate per foot of planted row. In effect, we have placed the unplanted seeds which would have been on the skipped row back into the two planted rows in the 2:1 skip. This increased density allows the 2:1 skip row the chance to compensate for the skips with potentially more fruiting positions per foot of planted row.
The information discussed in this report is from a single site, nonreplicated, one-year demonstration. This informational piece is designed to report the results of this demonstration and is not intended to infer any confirmed trends. Please use this information accordingly.
Sources: Cooperative Extension. November 19, 2009. Cotton Plant Growth Regulators. Available On-line: www.extension.org, verified 12/18/11. Mississippi State University. 2010. Cotton Production in Mississippi, Pix Use. MSUcares.com. Mississippi State University. 2010. Cotton Production in Mississippi, What final live plant population should I target? MSUcares.com. Monsanto Company is a member of Excellence Through Stewardship® (ETS). Monsanto products are commercialized in accordance with ETS Product Launch Stewardship Guidance, and in compliance with Monsanto’s Policy for Commercialization of Biotechnology-Derived Plant Products in Commodity Crops. This product has been approved for import into key export markets with functioning regulatory systems. Any crop or material produced from this product can only be exported to, or used, processed or sold in countries where all necessary regulatory approvals have been granted. It is a violation of national and international law to move material containing biotech traits across boundaries into nations where import is not permitted. Growers should talk to their grain handler or product purchaser to confirm their buying position for this product. Excellence Through Stewardship® is a registered trademark of Biotechnology Industry Organization. B.t. products may not yet be registered in all states. Check with your Monsanto representative for the registration status in your state. Individual results may vary, and performance may vary from location to location and from year to year. This result may not be an indicator of results you may obtain as local growing, soil and weather conditions may vary. Growers should evaluate data from multiple locations and years whenever possible. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Roundup Ready® crops contain genes that confer tolerance to glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup® brand agricultural herbicides. Roundup® brand agricultural herbicides will kill crops that are not tolerant to glyphosate. Bollgard II®, Genuity and Design®, Genuity Icons, Genuity®, Respect the Refuge and Cotton Design®, Roundup Ready®, Roundup®, and Technology Development by Monsanto and Design® are trademarks of Monsanto Technology LLC. Deltapine® is a registered trademark of Monsanto Company. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. ©2011 Monsanto Company. AMB121111