MetadataShow full item record
AbstractA single field study was established to evaluate the effects of planting date (PD) on the yield and fiber quality characteristics of several cotton varieties commonly grown in the Upper Gila River Valley of Safford. Eight varieties selected for evaluation in 2003 ranged from medium to medium-full varieties. These varieties included two Delta and Pine varieties (DP555BR and DP655BR), two Fiber Max varieties (FM989BR and FM991BR), two Stoneville varieties (ST5303R and ST5599BR), one CPCSD variety (Riata), and one variety from the Arizona Cotton Growers Association breeding program (AG3601). These eight varieties were planted on three separate planting dates (1 April, 23 April, and 12 May; 341, 525, and 779 heat units accumulated after January 1, respectively) in a split-plot within a randomized complete block design with four replications. Overall analysis of variance revealed significant differences due to main effects (PD; OSL=0.00043), sub effects (variety; OSL=0.0029), and interaction effects (PD*variety; OSL=0.0266). Extremely cool conditions surrounding the first PD resulted in significantly lower yields that the other two planting dates. Yields for PD 1 ranged from 506 lbs. lint/acre to about 850 lbs. lint/acre with DP555BR producing the highest and CPCSD Riata producing the lowest yield. Conditions surrounding the second PD were much improved over PD 1. However, soil temperatures still hovered near to and below the optimum temperature of 65oF. Yields were dramatically higher in PD 2 when compared to PD 1, ranging from a low of 847 lbs. lint/acre (AG3601) to 1139 lbs. lint/acre (FM991BR). PD 3 resulted in the best conditions for seedling emergence and stand establishment and produced the highest yield. Yields ranged from a low of 945 lbs. lint/acre (CPCSD Riata) to 1465 lbs. lint/acre (FM991BR). Fiber quality data demonstrated a couple of interesting trends. Micronaire tended to increase with later plantings for most varieties while fiber length had an inverse relationship with PD. Micronaire levels tended to be high enough to be discounted for every variety in at least one and usually two PDs, except for Riata. Riata had the lowest micronaire, and the longest and strongest fiber grades. These results are consistent with other evaluations of the high fiber quality associated with many of the California Acala varieties. However, relatively lower yields for this variety currently make it an unsuitable variety for this region despite the high fiber quality. Results from this evaluation demonstrate the importance of monitoring soil temperature and keeping a close eye on local weather forecasts when making planting date decisions regardless of the calendar date.