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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Plains Pest Management News - May 23, 2017

Good Morning!

Here is a link to the first issue of the Plains Pest Management Newsletter this year.

Find current and previous newsletters at the Hale County Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service website.
Once you are on the website, click the "Newsletters" tab then the IPM link.


Monday, May 8, 2017

South Plains Scout School - May 25, 2017

Everyone is invited to join us for the South Plains Field Scout School on Thursday, May 25, 2017 in Lubbock.  If you or your workers need an introduction and basic understanding of field scouting cotton, corn, sorghum, or peanuts for insect or disease, this is the place to get the training!  Please see the agenda below. 
Blayne Reed

South High Plains Scout School

Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center
1102 E. FM 1294, Lubbock, TX 79403
May 25, 2017

For crop consultant workers, farmers and their workers, County Extension agents and their interns, and any agricultural related worker - Three CEU’s will be offered

8:0 8:30 am Registration (free)

   8:30 - 9:00 am Agronomy & Plant Mapping Seth Byrd

9:00 9:30 am Insect Pests & Scouting Suhas Vyavhare, Blayne Reed

9:30 10:00 am Hands on Cotton Plant Mapping Blayne Reed,
   Suhas Vyavhare
Corn & Grain Sorghum 
  10:00 10:30 am Agronomy - Calvin Trostle
  10:30 11:15 am Insect Pests - Pat Porter

11:15 11:30 am Beneficial Insects Katelyn Kesheimer/Suhas Vyavhare

   11:30 12:00 Peanut Insects and Diseases Tyler Mays
   Contact Rae Cox, (806) 746 6101 to RSVP by May 23, 2017.


Educational programs by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service serve people of all ages regardless of socioeconomic level, race, color, religion, sex, disability or national origin.
The Texas A&M System, U.S. Department of Agriculture and the County Commissioners Courts of Texas Cooperating.


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May 2, 2017 Soil Temp in southeastern Swisher

May 2, 2017 Soil Temp

For the third year in a row, cool, wet weather has moved in just as we look to start planting season for cotton and are still adding to our winter heating bill rather than making turns in our cotton fields.  Following last weekend’s norther, I hurried back on May 2nd to a field I had taken soil temperatures in on April 24th.  While the 2nd was a warm sunny morning, soil temperatures will need some time to rebound after the cold shock.  The intended cotton field I checked was the no-till, heavy wheat stubble field which registered 56⁰F at 9:30 AM.  On the 24th, this same field registered 59⁰F. 
For a quick review, cotton gets off to its best start when planted in a recommended 69°F consistent temperature soil (roughly 64°F bare minimum with high air temperatures in the upper 80’s to low 90’s for the following week to continue a steep soil warming trend).  While I do note a warming trend in the weather forecast, I still see a chance of rain and a cool (not as cold as the last one) front expected early next week before the steep warming trend cotton seedlings would truly need begins.  That would place our planters starting to make those frantic turns in the fields about the 10th through the 12th.
I would urge producers not to worry about the calendar date until we at least start getting into double digits, no matter how many acres you intend to plant or what variety the acres are to be planted with.  Cotton’s development is tied to heat units, not days.  All varieties, regardless of how determinant or indeterminant, will get off to a better, healthier, and faster start when they are placed into better growing conditions.  This better, healthier, and faster start often means less seedling disease, a shorter window for thrips issues, less chances of early may hail stones, and a faster transition into reproductive mode.  It is absolutely impossible to extend cotton’s growing season by planting earlier in this area.  The cool, and (season depending) wet conditions in late April and early May always prevent it.  Even on the rare occasion that this early cotton survives and does not require replanting, cotton planted ‘cool’ will develop more slowly through these conditions.  Cotton planted into less than ideal conditions are will develop slower on a day to day basis compared to those planted into better conditions regardless of calendar planting date.  That is until the calendar planting date turns into June, at which point there is often not enough growing season left to make a good cotton crop no matter how good the start. 


Thursday, April 27, 2017

2016 Hale, Swisher, & Floyd Annual IPM Report

2016 Hale, Swisher, & Floyd Annual IPM Report


Provided is a link to the 2016 Hale, Swisher, & Floyd Annual IPM Report.  Included in the report are:

  • Summaries of our 2016 educational plans and the results of customer impact surveys

  • List of 2016 Educational Activities and Highlights

  • Summary of the 2016 growing season from an IPM standpoint

  • Links to all 2016 IPM newsletters for reference

  • Research result report summaries of all 2016 research and demonstration trials conducted
Please take a look over any research results pertinent to you and consider any impacts.  Feel free to share as desired.

See you soon as we get 2017 underway!




Monday, April 24, 2017

April 24, 2017 Quick Look at Area Soil Temperaturesand Successful Planting of Sorghum, Corn, & Cotton

April 24, 2017 Quick Look at Area Soil Temperatures and Successful Planting of Sorghum, Corn, & Cotton

               Planting season is nearly upon us again, and many good producers are getting very antsy about getting into the field, especially our sorghum producers who need to get that crop started and get as much development completed as possible before the dreaded sugarcane aphid arrives.  This morning I took two soil temperature readings in Southern and Southeastern Swisher County.  The first was 59°F and in a no-till pivot with heavy wheat stubble cover.  The second was at 60⁰F and in conventionally flat tilled, drip irrigated cotton on cotton ground.  This is a pretty good soil temperature for planting corn or grain sorghum, but is far too cool for cotton.  Then there is the consideration of this week’s forecast with two additional cold fronts due in before the start of May with night temperatures dipping into the 30’s and 40’s.
               The minimum soil temperature for corn is 56°F (preferably 58°F or with a warmer week ahead to emerge into) while sorghum requires a 58°F (preferably 60°F or with a warmer week ahead to emerge into).  With those cooler temperatures in the upcoming forecast I do get a touch apprehensive about all crops we might have starting in the soil so far, but odd remain that corn and sorghum should be ok as just as many warm days are predicted as cold.
               Cotton gets off to its best start when planted in a recommended 69°F consistent temperature soil (roughly 64°F bare minimum with high air temperatures in the upper 80’s to low 90’s for the following week to continue a steep soil warming trend).  Soil temperature can and does generally follow air temperatures with some lag time.  Higher moisture content in the soil usually slows the soil’s response to air temperatures while dryer soils respond quicker.  Likewise, soils with heavy cover will naturally be cooler through the shading of the soil by the cover.  The best time to take soil temperature reading in your fields would be between 7 AM and 10 AM.  That early morning period is when the soil temperature should be at its lowest, guaranteeing that the reading is accurately the minimum temperature we need to be watching.  As I look at the forecast, jumble it up with research results about cotton getting off to its best start, the cotton should certainly stay in the barn for a bit longer.
               We will be taking a few more local soil temperature readings next week to get the best feel for ideal cotton planting conditions.
Good Luck!

Blayne Reed