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Agronomy Journal Abstract -

Fruiting in Cotton as Affected by Controlled Boll Set1


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 70 No. 1, p. 118-122
    Received: Apr 7, 1977

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  1. L. L. Patterson,
  2. D. R. Buxton and
  3. R. E. Briggs2



Environmental stress and boll load have both been suggested as responsible for the fruiting cessation (cut out) that occurs in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) in mid-summer in the hot, desert southwestern USA. This study was conducted to examine the influence of boll load on the flowering hiatus. Two cultivars differing in growth habit were planted in the field on an Avondale clay loam soil, a member of the fine, loamy, mixed Hyperthermic Torrifluventic Haplustolls. ‘Deltapine Smooth Leaf’ (DpSL) has a more determinate growth habit than ‘Acala 44–10’ (A-44). Fruiting was limited during a 90-day period within each year. Flowers in excess of one flower per plant per time interval, ranging from 2 to 5 days, were removed. Flowers left on plants were tagged and used to calculate boll retention curves. Limiting the number of flowers retained increased total flower production with DpSL more responsive than A-44. Defloration resulted in cycling of the flower production curve which appeared to be related to relief of moisture stress either from irrigation or rain. Defloration increased both total and percent boll retention during the normal period of cessation of new vegetative and flowering growth with DpSL being more responsive than A-44. We conclude that boll load exerts a large influence on fruiting behavior of cotton and is the major controlling factor of the cut out period in the cultivars tested.

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