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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: MANAGING WATER AVAILABILITY AND QUALITY TO MAINTAIN OR INCREASE AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION, CONSERVE NATURAL RESOURCES, AND ENHANCE ENVIRONMENT

Location: Coastal Plain Soil, Water and Plant Conservation Research

Title: Water-sensitivity of cotton growth stages

Authors
item Bauer, Philip
item Faircloth, Wilson -
item Rowland, Diane -
item Ritchie, Glen -

Submitted to: Popular Publication
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: September 14, 2012
Publication Date: September 28, 2012
Citation: Bauer, P.J., Faircloth, W., Rowland, D., Ritchie, G. 2012. Water-sensitivity of cotton growth stages. In: Perry, C. and Barnes, E., editors, Cotton Irrigation Management for Humid Regions. Cotton Incorporated, Cary, North Carolina. p. 17-20. http://www.cottoninc.com/fiber/AgriculturalDisciplines/Engineering/Irrigation-Management/cotton-irrigation-web.pdf

Technical Abstract: All irrigations during a season are not equal in terms of providing economic return on the money spent to irrigate cotton. This article provides a brief description of the effect of water stress on cotton during the different growth stages of the plant and the relative benefit of irrigating to relieve stress. Severe water deficit stress immediately after planting is damaging to crop yield if the stress kills germinating seeds and reduces plant populations. Once plants have emerged, cotton is tolerant of moderate soil water deficit. At about 30 days after emergence, the plants begin to grow rapidly and developed flower buds. Yields can be substantially reduced with water deficit stress at this time and through the early bloom period. Water deficit stress after early bloom has less impact on yield but will result in poorer fiber quality. Farmers who irrigate should especially avoid letting soil water deficits occur during the 7-10 days between planting and emergence and the 40 days between flower bud development and peak bloom.

Last Modified: 9/2/2014
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