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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Stoneville, Mississippi » Crop Production Systems Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #312031

Research Project: Development of Productive, Profitable, and Sustainable Crop Production Systems for the Mid-South

Location: Crop Production Systems Research

Title: Twin-row production of cotton genotypes varying in leaf shape

Author
item Pettigrew, William

Submitted to: Journal of Cotton Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/8/2015
Publication Date: 8/11/2015
Citation: Pettigrew, W.T. 2015. Twin-row production of cotton genotypes varying in leaf shape. Journal of Cotton Science. 19:319-327.

Interpretive Summary: Most Mid-South cotton producers no longer just grow cotton on all their planted acres. Many have rotated some of their acreage to corn or soybean production. This development means that the same equipment will usually be used for planting multiple and different crops. Many regional producers have also begun adapting twin-row planting patterns (two rows spaced about 7 to 15 inches apart and centered on a 40 inch bed) for use on their corn and soybean acreage. To make the most efficient use of that piece of equipment, producers would want to plant as many acres with that planting set up as possible, including cotton acreages. Unfortunately, there is only limited amount of research addressing aspects of twin-row cotton production. An ARS scientist at the Crop Production Systems Research Unit in Stoneville, MS conducted research to document how cotton lines varying in leaf shape and leaf size performed when grown under either twin-row or single row production systems. The response to twin-row planting compared to single row planting was consistent across all the cotton lines of varying leaf shape and size. The twin row canopies produced more leaf area that intercepted more sunlight early in the growing season. Those differences diminished later in the season as the canopies grew larger and closed the gap between the rows of both planting patterns. Despite increased early season leaf area production and sunlight interception, no differences between planting patterns were detected for lint yield, yield components, or fiber quality traits. Although, twin row production didn’t improve yields or fiber quality, it didn’t hurt them either. This aspect may allow producers to use the same planting pattern (twin row) for multiple crops of cotton, soybean, or corn. Agronomists, crop physiologists, extension personnel, consultants, and producers will be able to utilize the information from this research to make proper decisions regarding the configuration of a mechanical planter for cotton production.

Technical Abstract: Twin row planting for soybean and maize has proliferated in Mid-South production systems during the past decade. Knowledge of cotton production with twin row planting is limited. The objective of this research was to determine how cotton leaf-type isolines (varying in size and the degree of lobing) performed in both twin row and single row planting patterns. Field studies were conducted in 2011 and 2012. Four genotypes (MD 65-11 normal, MD 65-11 okra, MD 65-11 super okra, and ST 4554B2RF) were grown in both twin row and single row planting patterns. Dry matter partitioning, leaf area index, light interception, nodes above white bloom, lint yield, and fiber quality data were collected. The response to twin row planting when compared to single row planting was consistent across all the cotton genotypes evaluated in this study. Twin row canopies produced a greater early season leaf area index that intercepted more sunlight than the single row pattern, but these differences diminished as the season progressed. Twin row plots reached cutout approximately 2 days earlier than the single row plots. Despite increased early season leaf area production and sunlight interception, no differences between planting patterns were detected for lint yield, the yield components, or fiber quality traits. Convenience of using a standard planting configuration across multiple crops may be the only justification for twin row planting in cotton because neither lint yield or fiber quality was impacted.