Southeastern tobacco succumbing to tomato spotted wilt

In Southeast Farm Press

by Chris Bickers, Southeast Farm Press

Any hopes that the U.S. tobacco crop might escape serious damage from tomato spotted wilt were dashed at the end of May and in early June when substantial infestations broke out in Georgia and the Carolinas.

Jerry Breland of the Walterboro area of South Carolina was one of the farmers reeling from the intensity of the hit his flue-cured had taken from the disease. He talked to Southeast Farm Press on June 9. Continue reading

Insect scouting tips for soybean growers

In Southeast Farm Press

by Katie Nichols

For growers working to save soybean crops in the field, Alabama Cooperative Extension System entomologist Dr. Tim Reed has some insect scouting tips.

Cutworms
Cutworms are large, greasy worms that may be difficult to see. These insects burrow into the soil during the day and come to the surface to feed at night. These worms can hide underneath the residue between rows—especially in cover crop residues. Continue reading

New thrips forecasting tool helps cotton growers with pre-plant decisions

NC State researchers have created a thrips forecasting tool to make pre-plant decisions for cotton.

To manage thrips, most cotton growers know that they need to treat before planting, either by using an insecticidal seed treatment or an insecticide in-furrow. However, many growers aren’t sure which one will be more effective, or whether a foliar spray will do the trick. Continue reading

AgriLife vegetable breeding program to develop better cultivars

by Paul Schattenberg, Texas A&M AgriLife

A unique vegetable breeding program at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Uvalde could bring improved onion, watermelon, tomato and black-eyed pea varieties to producers in South and Central Texas.

“The uniqueness of this multidisciplinary breeding program, involving breeders, physiologists, pathologists and entomologists, is the screening and development of new germplasm and ultimately improved varieties are conducted in real-life environmental conditions,” said Dr. Daniel Leskovar, center director and vegetable physiologist. “This will ensure the cultivars we breed are highly adaptable, as well as have abiotic and biotic stress tolerance and provide high yield and quality. Continue reading

Invasive species likely to remain a big problem

In Southeast Farm Press

by John Hart, Southeast Farm Press

Agriculture must take action now to manage the possible onslaught of new organisms, new insects and new diseases that is expected to escalate.

“One thing that is very clear is our world today is getting smaller at least figuratively,” said Tim Brenneman, a professor of plant pathology at the University of Georgia in Tifton, Ga., in an address to the annual meeting of the American Peanut Research and Education Society in Clearwater, Fla., July 14. Continue reading

Thrips resistance in cotton

In Southeast Farm Press

by Ron Smith, Alabama Cooperative Extension System

The first major insect we focus on during the cotton production season is thrips. Many have heard and read in recent years about the resistance of thrips to our available seed treatments.

We already recommend foliar sprays at the one to two true-leaf stage when cotton seedlings are not growing rapidly and/or thrips pressure is extremely heavy. As the resistance problem grows, we likely will see an increased need for foliar sprays on top of the seed treatments. Continue reading

When neonicotinoids don’t control thrips, using more isn’t better

In Southeast Farm Press

Tobacco thrips resistant to neonicotinoid class of insecticides are  proving to be more of a problem for cotton producers in North Carolina and across the Southeast.

During the annual convention of the North Carolina Agricultural Consultants Association in Raleigh, George Kennedy, William Neals Reynolds distinguished professor of entomology from North Carolina State University, shared results of research conducted in 2014 and 2015 in the 30 counties where cotton is grown in North Carolina.  The neonicotinoid resistance research, which will continue this year, seeks to find answers to what is driving resistance and what can be done about it. Continue reading