Response of Cotton to Row Patterns and Plant Populations1
- Shelby H. Baker2
Theoretically, cotton planted in narrow rows at high plant populations has a potential of reducing production cost by promoting earlier maturity. The cost of controlling insects, weeds, and harvest due to a once-over harvest would all be reduced.
Studies were conducted to determine how a cultivar developed for conventional production methods would respond to a narrow row system. Coker 310 was planted in conventional 91.4 cm rows at a population of 107,489 plants/ha, in four 40.6 cm rows on a 182.9 cm bed and in twin 25.4 cm rows on a 91.4 cm bed at populations of 214,977; 286,636; and 358,295 plants/ha for 3 years.
There were no differences in yield, earliness, lint percent, fiber length or strength between narrow row and the conventional check. The conventional check produced larger bolls, fewer blooms, a lower potential yield and set a higher percent of early blooms.
Narrow rows gave no differences in total yield, earliness, lint percent, fiber length, or strength resulting from row patterns or plant populations. The highest plant population gave more blooms in twin 25.4 cm rows, but not in 40.6 cm rows. Potential yield was not influenced by population within row patterns, but there was a row pattern response at the same plant population.
Boll size tended to be inversely related to plant population. The highest plant population in the 40.6 cm rows produced a finer fiber than other treatments.
This study indicates the potential of high population — narrow row planting is lost mainly through excessive shedding of young bolls during the first 3 weeks of blooming.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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