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Title: Part II: Dealing with Plant Stress in Louisiana Sugarcane Production

item Viator, Ryan
item Johnson, Richard
item Richard Jr, Edward

Submitted to: Sugar Journal
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/31/2006
Publication Date: 6/20/2007
Citation: Viator, R.P., Johnson, R.M., Richard Jr, E.P. 2007. Part II: Dealing with Plant Stress in Louisiana Sugarcane Production. Sugar Journal. 69(9):6.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Sugarcane can encounter several grower-induced stresses during the later part of the growing season. The purpose of this article is to transfer research findings in the areas of cultivation, planting practices, and ripener usage in an effort to communicate how Louisiana sugarcane producers can more effectively eliminate these stresses and thereby reduce the potential negative impacts, especially on ratoon crops. Research indicates that cane and sugar yields are increased by 7% when first ratoon cane is cultivated verses no cultivation. Cultivation applies soil to the row top covering ratoon setts to reduce vulnerability to stresses such as cold temperatures, disease, and desiccation. Planting practices research indicates that planting in August increases yields by 6 and 18% compared to planting in September and October, and that 2-3 inches of soil is optimal for good emergence and yields. Ripener research on LCP 85-384 indicates that a treatment-to-harvest interval of 60 days will decrease yield the following year. Preliminary data on HoCP 96-540, Ho 95-988, and L 97-128 indicates that yield is not reduced in subsequent ratoons when the ripeners are used according to recommendations. Each of the stresses discussed can have some impact on yield and grower profits. When combined, the impact of two or more of these stresses can have a great impact on a grower’s economic viability. The future of the Louisiana industry is promising considering the great yield potential of the newly released cultivars. Growers must optimize this yield potential with sound cultural practices.