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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Aerial Imaging of Seasonal Cotton Root Rot Progression in Flutriafol-Treated and Nontreated Cotton Fields in South and Central Texas

Location: Aerial Application Technology Research

2013 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416):
1) Monitor the seasonal progression of cotton root rot within flutriafol-treated and untreated cotton fields in the Lower Coastal Bend (Corpus Christi) and Southern Rolling Plains (San Angelo) regions of Texas using aerial imagery; 2) Develop image mosaics and regional maps to document the distribution of cotton root rot incidence and severity in the two regions; and 3) Assess the efficacy of flutriafol treatments for the control of cotton root rot on a whole-field basis and in small plots using new and historical images in both regions.

1b. Approach (from AD-416):
1) Airborne multispectral imagery will be collected using a two-camera imaging system from fungicide-treated and untreated fields on a biweekly basis from early June to early August in the Corpus Christi area and from late July to late September in the San Angelo area. Images will be taken at 3050 m (10000 ft) above ground level in four flight lines with a 30-40% forward overlap. The images will be georeferenced and then classified into root rot-infected and non-infected zones using unsupervised and supervised classification techniques; 2) The georeferenced images will be mosaicked to document the extent and severity of root rot damage within fungicide-treated and untreated fields in both study areas; and 3) Fields previously imaged will be used to evaluate the efficacy of the treatments by comparing the change in infection between the current year and previous years. The small-plot experiments will be used to evaluate the differences in cotton root rot control among different treatments. Multiple study sites in the Corpus Christi and San Angelo areas will be established and different combinations of application rates and methods will be used.

3. Progress Report:
This is a new project, with the goal of implementing airborne remote sensing technologies to assess the efficacy of the fungicide futriafol in reducing cotton root rot infections in cotton fields. In FY 2013, a newly developed two-camera remote sensing system was used to classify root rot-infected and non-infected cotton fields at Corpus Christi and San Angelo, TX. To date, seven remote sensing flights have been made over these areas. Images obtained for each of the fields in the study have been appropriately analyzed and classified according to established procedures. Data will be processed for the entire growing season to evaluate the effectiveness of various root rot control methods. The work, as it progresses, will generate new knowledge to facilitate effective management/control of cotton root rot which is an important obstacle to efficient and profitable cotton production in many areas of the U.S. Cotton Belt.

4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 05/22/2017
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