Deltapine cotton variety slows Lygus

The worst yield-robbing insect pest in cotton last season was the plant bug, according to Extension entomologists, but in 2010 growers can plant a Deltapine variety that can help with Lygus management and offer outstanding yield and fiber quality potential.

Most commercial cotton varieties available for planting today are nectaried, which means they produce nectar from glands located under the leaves. DP 0935 B2RF, however is a nectariless variety that lacks those glands.

After two years of testing DP 0935 B2RF against normal nectaried varieties, Monsanto Company researchers found that DP 0935 B2RF tends to have lower Lygus populations and higher square retention. It also has the potential for fewer insecticide treatments for plant bugs versus nectaried varieties.

“The nectariless trait can be a valuable Lygus management tool for farmers and crop consultants,” says Dave Rhylander, Deltapine marketing manager. “On top of that, DP 0935 B2RF consistently out-yielded widely-planted standards, showed high lint turnout and outstanding fiber qualities during two years of testing on commercial farms.”

In 125 Monsanto trials conducted across the Belt in 2008, DP 0935 B2RF out-yielded ST 4554 B2RF by an average of 60 pounds per acre. In 2009, DP 0935 B2RF averaged 45 pounds per acre higher yield return than three leading varieties tested in 112 Monsanto trials spread across the Belt. The varieties tested against were ST 5458 B2RF, PHY 485 WRF and DP 555 BG/RR.

Scott Bollman, Monsanto cotton traits technology development manager, explains nectariless trait testing, “Results of Monsanto’s research on the nectariless versus nectaried cotton are consistent with historical university data evaluating the nectariless trait, including research in 2007 by Louisiana State University and research done in 2008 by Mississippi State University. Both plant bug populations and square loss trend lower on nectariless varieties. Moderate to high numbers of plant bugs, however, can overwhelm the deterrence effect of the nectariless trait and insecticide treatments could be needed. But the added value of the nectariless trait in DP 0935 B2RF holds promise of being a Lygus management tool.”

“DP 0935 B2RF is the only nectariless cotton variety on the market and it offers outstanding performance in yield and fiber quality,” Rhylander says. “We strongly encourage farmers to try this variety in 2010.”

To learn what farmers are saying about the new Deltapine varieties, go to http://www.cottoncommunity.com.

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