By AgFax Media LLC, AgFax.com
More defoliation has started, with applications underway at least into northeast Arkansas. So far, no reports of cotton actually being picked. In parts of the region, growers are focusing on wrapping up corn harvest or starting into early soybeans.
Insect and mite issues are few and far between in cotton now and isolated to the later plantings.
LOUISIANA CROP REPORTS
Sebe Brown, Northeast Louisiana Region Extension Entomologist:
"Cotton has gotten pretty quiet and a lot more fields are moving toward defoliation. Outside of the very, very late fields, insect applications have halted, I think.
"Defoliation really just started this week and more fields have either been sprayed or guys are lining up applications. A lot of growers are still wrapping up corn harvest and soybeans are being cut now. About the time soybean harvest wraps up, farmers can jump into picking cotton.
"Soybean loopers are starting to pick up more consistently in soybeans across the state but not many applications are going out. Beans matured fast and guys are cutting loose of plenty of fields in terms of loopers. Some soybeans are probably being treated for stink bugs right now (8/28) but we'll still have a lot of fields that will be harvested without ever receiving an insecticide application this year.
"We are picking up redbanded stink bugs a little more in late soybeans. It's nothing to be alarmed about. With the kind of winter we had, redbanded typically don't pick up in north Louisiana until late in the season and the numbers won't be large, either. Where people are treating for stink bugs, it's a hodgepodge of greens and browns with some redbanded in the mix.
"Preliminary soybean yields are better than expected. I'm hearing about dryland beans at 50 bu/acre. Some irrigated beans are pretty consistently in the 80s, I'm told, with a smaller number of fields going into the 90s."
Richard Griffing, Griffing Consulting, LLC, Monterey, Louisiana:
"We're right in the middle of defoliation. Some started 6 or 7 days ago (from 8/28) and it's moving fast now. In another 12 days, my growers will be through with defoliation, I expect.
"Some picking will likely start Monday (9/3) and I can't wait! This crop is finishing early, it looks pretty good and I'm anxious to see how it finishes out. We're 7 days or more ahead of average. Usually, we start picking cotton around September 10.
"We're also desiccating soybeans as fast as we can. We're 60% desiccated and 35% of our beans have been harvested. Where we've harvested beans, some dryland fields only managed 27 bu/acre where they were planted early and went through a pretty bad stretch of dry weather. I've also heard of one dryland yield as high as 93 bu/acre. A lot of dryland beans are running around 50.
"We're just getting into irrigated acreage. So far, they're at 70-plus bu/acre, with monitors showing spots at 85 to 92 in some fields.
"A few people are still cutting corn. Some dryland was as low as 60 bu/acre, but in places it was up to 230. Irrigated corn has been bumping along at 200 to 210. Everything is wrapping up quickly. In another 10 days, I'll only be checking about 2% of my acres and that will be it."