FirstPick, a cotton harvest aid, and Staple LX, a liquid formulation well-suited for use on Roundup Ready Flex cotton, were announced at a press conference during the recent Beltwide Cotton Conference in San Antonio, Texas.

FirstPick, an ethephon-based defoliant/boll opener, will be available for the 2006 crop season for growers in the Delta, Texas and the Southeast.

“FirstPick has shown to be the quickest boll opener among the ethephon products on the market, and during harvest saving a day or two picking cotton can be worth a lot of money to growers,” notes Robert Etheridge, product manager for DuPont.

The new material is 100 percent water soluble, which should reduce clogging problems commonly associated with ethephon products and provide improved ease of mixing, spraying and cleaning equipment.

Touted to be economically and environmentally friendly, FirstPick allows growers to use reduced rates of DEF, Folex, Dropp, FreeFall and other cotton defoliants in tank-mixes.

Best results in field testing have come when FirstPick is used as a foliar spray when sufficient mature, unopened bolls have developed to provide maximum yield, which is approximately 65 percent of bolls open.

Under most weather conditions, FirstPick can be applied at 2 quarts per acre in a tank mix with a labeled cotton defoliant. The tank mix should be applied as a dilute spray in 10 to 15 gallons of water per acre using ground application and 3 to 5 gallons of water using aerial application.

In field tests from the Carolinas to Texas, FirstPick at 2 quarts per acre in a tank mix with 4.5 to 12 ounces per acre of Folex consistently produced over 85 percent open bolls and over 85 percent defoliation.

DuPont also announced a new liquid formulation of Staple, which will be available for the 2006 cropping season.

Staple LX herbicide takes advantage of the extended timeframe for over-the-top application and higher rates of herbicides on Roundup Ready Flex cotton.

“Staple LX has the least restrictive use directions for over-the-top applications with glyphosate. Simply time your over-the-top application to weed size and go,” says Mike Cunnane, product manager for DuPont.

The new liquid formulation of Staple can be tank-mixed with glyphosate and sprayed on cotton any time from the cotyledon to six- to eight-leaf stage to enhance soil residual activity on some species of morningglory, teaweed, hemp sesbania, Florida beggarweed and bristly starbur.

Perhaps the biggest attribute of Staple LX is for control of glyphosate-tolerant pigweed. Resistance to Palmer amaranth, commonly called big-pitted pigweed, has been documented in Georgia and is suspected to occur in the Carolinas. In Roundup Ready fields with high infestations of pigweed, Staple LX provides growers with some needed flexibility for control.