The Beltwide Cotton Nematode Committee attributed record yield reductions to nematodes in 2006, with 5.32 percent of the crop lost to the pests. With cotton losses from nematode pressure at an all-time high, growers are considering management options.

Cotton growers can use a side-dress application of Temik insecticide-nematicide to guard against yield losses from nematodes, said Herb Young, Bayer CropScience technical services representative.

“Growers can make a single sidedress application of Temik from around pinhead square until early bloom,” Young said. “This not only extends nematode control, but also controls key insect pests such as spider mites and tarnished plant bugs. Take care not to delay applications, which could result in mechanical damage such as root pruning.”

“A Temik sidedress application of 7 pounds per acre is our standard rate, with timing at pinhead square,” Wes Briggs, an independent crop consultant in Bainbridge, Ga., said. “It has worked well for us. Some fields could easily lose a bale of cotton per acre without it.”

Briggs said many of the south Georgia acres he consults have sandy soils, a perfect environment for severe root-knot nematode populations.

A 2004-05 Independent Crop Consultants survey revealed that consultants who predominately used insecticide seed treatments instead of an at-plant Temik application sprayed twice as many acres for aphids.

The same survey noted a ninefold increase in spider mite sprays where at-plant Temik applications were not made.

Young said Temik sidedress applications should be applied with a coulter rig or similar equipment that will incorporate the material into the soil. Growers can contact their local dealers or Bayer CropScience sales representatives for the availability of applicator equipment.

Each Bayer sales representatives have two to three sidedress rigs each that they lend to growers.

For more information on Temik, visit www.CottonExperts.com.