Author Archives: linda.francis

2016 Alternative Crop Options after Failed Cotton and Late-Season Crop Planting for the Texas South Plains

by Dr. Calvin Trostle, Extension Agronomy, Lubbock, 806-746-6101, Hailstorms, wind damage, poor stands—and yes, occasionally too much rain(!)—place Texas farmers in a possible replant decision on a failed crop, usually cotton, or pushes planting back so much that cotton or other full-season crops are no longer viable. What to do? What are my options? New for 14th annual guide for the Texas South Plains are contributions from Dr. Seth Byrd, cotton extension agronomist, Lubbock, The guide is oriented to the South Plains, but producers in the… Read More →

Southern Plains of Texas: Scout for Thrips

by Suhas Vyavhare, Assistant Professor and Extension Entomologist, Lubbock, TX; and Blayne Reed It has been a very stop-n-go spring planting season for cotton in the Southern High Plains of Texas. Here we are again, waiting for rain to end so we can resume cotton planting. From Plainview north, an area consisting of our usually more calendar date conscientious producers, about 70% of the cotton has been planted while only about 50% South of Plainview. Rainfall this week has added much needed topsoil moisture helping dryland fields… Read More →

Sesame for Texas—High Plains & Rolling Plains

by Dr. Calvin Trostle, Extension Agronomy, Lubbock, 806-746-6101, Sesame is a heat-tolerant, drought-tolerant crop that has a good fit in much of Texas. Due to its small seed size it may present a planting challenge for some farmers (the right planter plates/discs and proper settings alleviate this), and due to just a few registered herbicides (Sonalan, some grass herbicides for mid-season control, Dual products) sesame is not for your weedy ground. But sesame has crop rotation advantages, wild hogs largely seem to leave it alone, and there… Read More →

Managing for Hessian fly in Texas Wheat

by Dr. Clark Neely, Statewide Small Grains Extension Specialist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Dr. Allen Knutson, Extension Entomologist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Hessian fly is a persistent threat to many wheat producersin portions of the Blacklands, the southern Rolling Plains (Concho Valley) and South Texas. Over 70 counties in Texas have reported Hessian fly infestations which can severely impact wheat yields through stunted tillers, lodging and even plant death in severe cases. In 2016, Hessian fly was detected at research plots near McGregor, Brady, and Thrall, TX (Fig… Read More →

Wet Conditions Leading to Yellow Cotton in South Texas: What Should Be Done?

by Dr. Gaylon Morgan, Professor and Extension State Specialist, 979-845-2425; It has been another wet spring and early summer for the Coastal Bend, Upper Gulf Coast, and Blacklands of Texas. The heavy clay soils in these regions are the lifeblood of crop production in the regions because of high water and nutrient holding capacity. However, these soils also drain slower and excessive rain can lead to prolonged saturated and anaerobic soil conditions. Under the saturated conditions, very little oxygen remains in the soil. Without oxygen in the… Read More →

Preserving Our Weed Management Tools Through Good Stewardship

by Gaylon Morgan, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, College Station, TX;; Paul Baumann, Texas A&N AgriLife Extension Service, College Station, TX;; Josh McGinty, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Corpus Christi, TX, Large farms and erratic weather makes it difficult for producers to cover all their acres for nutrient and pest management. So, everyone is looking for ways to cut trips across the fields to save money and time. However, if we are not careful, we could be doing more harm than good and costing ourselves… Read More →

Potential Income Losses in Harvesting Dry Wheat Grain

by Dr. Calvin Trostle, Professor & Extension Agronomist, Lubbock,; Dr. Clark Neely, Assistant Professor & State Extension Small Grains Agronomist, The standard moisture for wheat grain at harvest time is 13.5%. If your wheat moisture is above 13.5% you will be docked for the moisture. If you are too much above standard moisture content for wheat your delivery point may reject the grain, especially if they do not have the capacity to dry grain. Common incentives that drive harvesting wheat as soon as possible include minimizing… Read More →

Mild Winter and Wet Spring Provide Challenges for Wheat Producers

by Dr. Clark Neely, Statewide Small Grains Extension Specialist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, College Station, TX, Dr. Ron French, Extension Plant Pathologist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Amarillo, TX, Dr. Josh McGinty, Regional Extension Agronomist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Corpus Christi, TX Wheat rusts have been another hot topic in wheat production for 2016. Following a severe stripe rust outbreak in 2015, most of Texas is once again seeing the effects of this disease on the state’s crop for 2016 (Fig 1). Mild winter temperatures allowed for the establishment… Read More →

Early-season Insect Management for South Texas Cotton

by Robert Bowling, Ph.D., Assistant Professor and AgriLife Extension Entomology Specialist Cotton: Much of the Coastal Bend and Wintergarden cotton is out of danger for thrips injury. It has been a quiet year for thrips and may give credence that cotton insecticide seed treatments are working fine in Texas. However, frequent heavy rain events around the area have likely helped keep their populations in check. The cotton aphid is on the prowl. There are reports of cotton aphids building on cotton growing in the Valley. Late last week… Read More →

Considerations for Cotton Planting and Early Season Growth

by Seth Byrd, Assistant Professor & Extension Cotton Specialist, Lubbock, TX As we near the time of the year when cotton planting will start in the High Plains and Rolling Plains region, it is always helpful to remind ourselves of early-season growth and development of cotton in order to start-off the season strong. Two of the primary drivers behind the growth of cotton, both at early growth stages and throughout the season, are water and temperature. While warm days certainly signal the onset of planting season, be careful… Read More →