Arizona and California cotton growers have a wide variety of seed options for the 2016 crop

Arizona and California cotton growers have a wide variety of seed options for the 2016 crop.

2016 cotton variety options for California, Arizona

The 2016 cotton planting season is just around the corner and growers are busily studying variety information to make the best seed selections for their farm operations. This article includes cotton information based on last year’s crop results, plus new varieties available to growers this year.  

The 2016 cotton planting season is just around the corner and growers are busily studying variety information to make the best seed selections for their farm operations. This article includes cotton information based on last year’s crop results, plus new varieties available to growers this year.  

California

In 2015, Dow AgroSciences’ Phytogen cotton seed brand was the top planted Pima- and Upland Acala-type cottons in the Golden State, followed by Bayer CropScience’s FiberMax and Stoneville cotton.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, nearly half of the California Upland crop was spread across four Phytogen varieties. More than 82 percent of the Pima crop was planted in two Phytogen varieties.

Dow sales rep Harry Peck in California says PHY 725 RF has good yield potential and Roundup Ready Flex technology. Some growers have reported yield averages of 3-4 bales per acre. Along with PHY 755 WRF, Peck says these two varieties have performed well across the San Joaquin Valley. PHY 755 WRF includes glyphosate resistance technology and WideStrike insect protection.

New to PhytoGen’s 2016 Acala cotton seed line up is PHY 764 WRF with glyphosate resistance and WideStrike. Peck says two Tulare County growers last year yielded 20 percent more lint with PHY 764 WRF, compared to PHY 725 WRF.

PhytoGen’s Pima cotton offerings for California include: PHY 802 RF, PHY 805 RF, PHY 811 RF, PHY 830, plus two new varieties for 2016 - PHY 841 RF and PHY 881 RF. The new varieties have larger seeds compared to most Pima varieties.

Bayer CropScience has its Stoneville and FiberMax cotton brands. California growers in 2016 can plant Bayer’s Daytona RF, an Acala which San Joaquin Valley cotton growers have grown for several years. Daytona RF includes Roundup Ready Flex technology without Bt or LibertyLink technology.

“The real sweet-spot for the Daytona is in the Dos Palos area,” says Kenny Melton, agronomist with Bayer CropScience.

He says Daytona RF offers good tolerance to Verticillium wilt, plus very good fiber quality and strength.

On the FiberMax side, Bayer will offer FM 1830 GLT which includes high yields with full tolerance to Liberty and glyphosate herbicides, plus broad-spectrum lepidopteran insect protection.

Also available from Bayer this year include are: FM 2322GL - a medium maturity Upland with herbicide tolerance only; FM 2334GLT from the same background as FM 1830GLT with a slightly later maturing seed; and FM 2007GLT – a medium-maturing Upland variety with good quality fiber and performs well under tougher growing conditions. 

Monsanto’s Deltapine cotton brand accounted for about 16 percent of California’s Upland crop including five varieties, and about 8.5 percent of the Pima crop.

For 2016, Deltapine Upland varieties for the Golden State will include DP 1044 B2RF, DP 1133 B2RF, DP 1522 B2XF, DP 1553 B2XF, and DP 1555 B2XF. Deltapine’s three Pima varieties include DP 340 PIMA, DP 348 RF PIMA, and DP 358 RF PIMA.

Arizona

About 45 percent of Arizona’s cotton acreage last year was planted in Monsanto Deltapine varieties. The company’s DP 1055 B2RF variety was the most popular variety, planted on 23 percent of the state’s acreage. 

Dave Albers, Monsanto’s cotton germplasm manager, calls the company’s DP 1044 B2RF, DP 1219 B2RF, and DP 1359 B2RF the “Big Three” varieties in Arizona.

While the continued popularity of DP 1044 B2RF is Arizona is impressive, Albers says Monsanto’s biggest variety news is the performance of the Class of 15 variety - DP 1549 B2XF. The new variety offers growers improved germplasm and more weed control options with the triple-stack of dicamba, glufosinate, and glyphosate tolerance. 

EPA has not yet approved dicamba use over the top of cotton.

“DP 1549 B2XF is an option for growers wanting improved weed control and to try out XtendFlex technology,” Albers said.

The variety has similar plant performance to Deltapine’s DP 1219 B2RF and DP 1359 B2RF varieties.

He added, “In many situations, I encourage Arizona growers to also try the DP 1646 B2XF variety with its excellent fiber and yield, plus mid-to-full maturity. A seed block near Coolidge last year yielded four-plus bales per acre and a 39 staple average.”

From Dow AgroSciences, the company expects to have a good supply of seed this year for Arizona growers, including the Uplands PHY 312, PHY 333, and PHY 499 WRF. There will be limited quantities of PHY 444 WRF, PHY 339 WRF, and PHY 375 WRF seed.

Junior Evans, Dow’s Arizona field rep, says PHY 399 WRF and PHY 312 are good options for growers coming off wheat or alfalfa crop rotations. Its early-maturity profile fits these cropping systems and works well in no-till operations.

On the extra-long staple side, PHY 805 RF was the top Pima planted in Arizona last year. Dow’s latest Pima entry for Arizona is PHY 811 RF which has good yield potential and fiber quality. Several Arizona growers picked more than 2.5 bales per acre from these two varieties, plus up to six-bale yields along the Colorado River with PHY 339 and PHY 499.

For 2016, PhytoGen has three new Upland varieties available for Arizona growers – PHY 312 WRF, PHY 333 WRF, PHY 499 WRF, and PHY 764 WRF (Acala). Dow will also have two new Pima varieties in Arizona grower trials in the state – PHY 841 RF and PHY 881 RF.

From Bayer CropScience, the company’s top Arizona variety last year was Stoneville ST 4946-GLB2 with good yields, fiber quality, plus good heat tolerance across Arizona, says Bayer’s Kenny Melton. Stoneville ST 4946-GLB2 has tolerance to the root knot nematode.

2016 will be the third year on the market for FiberMax FM 1830-GLT which offers early-to-mid-season maturity, good Verticillium wilt tolerance, and good fiber quality.

Bayer will have a good supply of Stoneville ST 4946-GLB2 and FiberMax FM 1830-GLT seeds.

The company will launch three new varieties in 2016: Stoneville 4848-GLT and Stoneville ST 4949-GLT - best used in central and western Arizona; plus FiberMax FM 1911-GLT as a good fit in eastern Arizona.

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