By Clint Thompson
The Georgia Cotton Commission (GCC) reminds producers the importance of ensuring enough nitrogen has been applied to this year’s crop.
“I think your top priority right now, I know a lot of people want to get in the field and spray pix and stuff like that but if you have not been able to get in the field and put out your sidedress nitrogen, that is your first priority, in my opinion,” said Camp Hand, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension cotton agronomist. “Whenever you’re able to get in the field, that’s the first thing that needs to get done.”
Excessive rains have highlighted this summer’s growing season, which has prevented growers from getting in the fields in a timely fashion. Hand stresses the importance of nitrogen applications at this stage in the growing season.
“From what I’ve heard (Glen Harris) say, if you don’t get it on before peak bloom then the crop’s going to run out of gas. It’s not going to be able to make before the end of the year,” Hand said. “We just need to make sure everything is there for our crop to make. Or that we’re doing everything in our power to give the crop what it needs to make at the end of the year. We can’t control the environment, but we can control what we do.”
Hand said that if growers need to put more nodes on to compensate for fruit loss, nitrogen is needed to do that.
He added that Georgia was below average for sunlight during July. Growers are likely to see the effects come harvest season.
“The same thing happened in 2018. There was a little bit of fruit shed and a little bit of square shed in 2018. But I don’t think we saw the full effects of that because Hurricane Michael wiped our crop out. If we’re able to get this crop off without a hitch, we may see some issues at the end of the season from these environmental conditions,” Hand said.