Monday, June 13, 2011

Drought Conditions Continue

Despite a few scattered thunderstorms, the drought conditions continue to dominate the row crop situation in much of Alabama. We have cotton that ranges from about 13-15 nodes (planted mid April) to other fields lacking moisture for seed germination. The oldest cotton is about knee high with squares from nodes 6 through 13-15. At this point, potential plant bug damage does not appear to be high. Roadsides and field borders dried down before cotton was old enough to provide food and shade in most fields. Excessive heat during the past 30 days has likely reduced plant bug populations on wild hosts.

Thrips numbers have been low for several weeks following about 4 weeks of high pressure from late April to mid May. The most prominent insects of the past few weeks have been false chinch bugs and white margined burrower bugs.

Most fields are in the stage between being susceptible to thrips and being susceptible to plant bug injury.