Site Specific Nematode Management—Development and Success in Cotton Production in the United States.

C. Overstreet, E. C. McGawley, A. Khalilian, T. L. Kirkpatrick, W. S. Monfort, W. Henderson, J. D. Mueller


Variability in edaphic factors such as clay content, organic matter, and nutrient availability within individual fields is a major obstacle confronting cotton producers. Adaptation of geospatial technologies such global positioning systems (GPS), yield monitors, autosteering, and the automated on-and-off technology required for site-specific nematicide application has provided growers with additional tools for managing nematodes. Multiple trials in several states were conducted to evaluate this technology in cotton. In a field infested with Meloidogyne spp., both shallow (0 to 0.3 m) and deep (0 to 0.91 m) apparent electrical conductivity (ECa) readings were highly correlated with sand content. Populations of Meloidogyne spp. were present when shallow and deep EC values were less than 30 and 90 mS/m, respectively. Across three years of trials in production fields in which verification strips (adjacent nematicide treated and untreated rows across all soil zones) were established to evaluate crop response to nematicide application, deep EC values from 27.4-m wide transects of verification strips were more predictive of yield response to application of 1,3-dichloropropene than were shallow EC values in one location and both ECa values equally effective at predicting responses at the second location. In 2006, yields from entire verification strips across three soil zones in four production fields showed that nematicide response was greatest in areas with the lowest EC values indicating highest content of sand. In 2008 in Ashley and Mississippi Counties, AR, nematicide treatment by soil zone resulted in 36% and 42% reductions in the amount of nematicide applied relative to whole-field application. In 2007 in Bamberg County, SC, there was a strong positive correlation between increasing population densities of Meloidogyne incognita and increasing sand content. Trials conducted during 2007 and 2009 in South Carolina against Hoplolaimus columbus showed a stepwise response to increasing rates of aldicarb in zone 1 but not in zones 2 and 3. Site-specific application of nematicides has been shown to be a viable option for producers as a potential management tool against several nematode pathogens of cotton.

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