Insect Pest Management In Cotton
Presented by Dr. Sebe Brown
Extension Field Crops Entomologist, LSU AgCenter
Growers in the Midsouth face many challenges in cotton insect control. During 2017, much of the Midsouth experienced unprecedented bollworm pressure which resulted in escapes in dual gene cotton. Additionally, bollworm resistance data generated by the Midsouth entomology group indicates reduced efficacy of commercially available Bt toxins in corn and cotton. This talk will focus on Bt issues experienced in cotton and research based solutions to insect issues in cotton pest management.

Managing Cotton And Corn With Crop Rotation And Cover Crops - Considering All The Angles
Presented by Dr. M. Wayne Ebelhar
Research Professor and Agronomist, Mississippi State University Ð Delta Research and Extension Center
Crop rotation has been practiced for many, many years and has regained popularity in the last few decades especially in cotton country. Government programs favored continuous cotton for optimum profitability with dryland production practices. As irrigation appeared across the Mid-South and Southeast, grain crops had improved yields and profitability. Grain acreage increased and cotton acreage declined. Research in the Mississippi Delta has shown 10-15% yield increases for cotton following corn as compared to cotton following cotton. Long-term rotations have been established in the Mississippi Delta to evaluate cotton/corn/soybean combinations. In recent years, cover crops have gained in popularity and have been planted on many acres in the region. However, much emphasis has been placed on the "value" of cover crops without much emphasis on the means to make the practice profitable especially when considering herbicide resistant weeks, insect and disease pressure, and nutrient management. This presentation will focus on the advantages and disadvantages of crop rotation and cover crops along with some of the hidden problems with cover crops.

Input Costs Keep Going Up. Can Growers Influence This?
Presented by Dr. Kater Hake
Vice President, Agricultural Research, Cotton Inc.
Growers are caught in a profit squeeze, not of their making. With low commodity prices and ever rising input costs, growers are dependent on sustained yield gains to provide profitability. Although most growers have seen some recent yield gains, the future is uncertain whether technology investments and weather stability will continue. Growers can influence both of these uncertainties with near term and long term decisions: testing reduced input systems, diversifying input suppliers, expanding use of generic products, building weather resilience into crops and fields. These and other grower actions will be briefly discussed.

When It All Goes Wrong
Presented by Hank Jones
Louisiana Consultant, RHJ Ag Services
2017 Presented many challenges for cotton farmers. I will discuss the effects of the multiple stresses from weather and the inconveniences faced by farmers by diseases and insects. I will also discuss what we did to manage these occurrences.

The Challenges Of Growing Cotton In 2018
Presented by Virgil King
Mississippi Crop Consultant: Cotton
King will present his view of the things that farmers will have to overcome in order to grow cotton in the future. He will consider cotton varieties, in-season insect and disease management and water management. He has been consulting for 36 years, having started checking crops when he was 17 years old. He holds a masterÕs degree from Mississippi State in entomology, plant pathology and weed science; and a bachelorÕs degree from the University of Mississippi in biology and chemistry. He grew up working on a row crop and cattle farm.

Yield: Understanding Where The Gains Have Come From And What To Expect In The Future
Presented by Dr. Jenny Clement Koebernic

Assistant Professor Cotton and Soybean Breeder, Auburn University
Cotton yield is the primary focus of any commercial breeding program. However, yields are highly sensitive to abiotic and biotic stresses with cumulative stresses resulting in devastating losses. The lack of crop protection reduces its potential from 3100lb/ac to less than 1500lb/ac and demonstrates the need to breed for these stresses. Through time, genetic yield gain can be contributed to yield stability and looking forward we can expect the trend to continue. Another component of yield gain is the management practices associated with these new cultivars. The approach a farmer once used to manage 2-bale cotton (for those who remember DP 50 or DP 20) is not the way you succeed with a 4-bale cotton cultivar. Higher yielding cultivars require up to date management strategies. My talk will discuss yield gains from both the US and Australian cotton industries and provide insight into the years to come.

Fighting FOV4 Plant Disease Before It Spreads Throughout Country
Presented by George LaCour, Jr.
Louisiana Farmer: Cotton, Soybeans, Corn, Wheat, Sugar Cane
FOV4, a plant disease attacking upland cotton in many fields in the San Joaquin Valley of California, could spread throughout the country and become a huge challenge for U.S. cotton. This disease has eliminated the economic possibility of planting upland cotton in many fields there. With the recent expansion of FOV4 into Texas and New Mexico, it's time to take a look at ways to overcome it before it spreads further. Using slides from western fields, LaCour will alert growers of this threat to U.S. cotton production and provide grower experiences and solutions learned from experiences out west. LaCour raises 800 acres of cotton, 3,300 acres of soybeans, 1,200 acres of corn, 200 acres of winter wheat and 2,000 acres of sugar cane. He was raised on a farm, and has been farming for 34 years. He attended the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and is the current chairman of the Cotton Board.

Extend And Enlist Technologies: My Experiences In 2017 Using Both In My Cotton Crop
Presented by John Lindamood
Tennessee Farmer: Cotton, Corn, Wheat, Soybeans
2017 was a challenging year for the introduction of new technologies. We elected to use both Enlist and Extend technologies in our cotton crop, in order to get a good comparison. I will discuss the efficacy of these products, as well as the challenges involved with using each technology. In addition to examining our experiences in 2017, we will be looking forward to 2018 for the opportunities to incorporate these products into our production plan going forward. After earning a B.S. in Business Administration from Murray State University, John Lindamood returned to farm with his father, and today their operation consists of cotton, corn, wheat and soybean acreage. He has served on several National Cotton Council committees, among them its Environmental Task Force and Worker Protection Standards Working Group. He participated in the NCC's 2006 China Leadership Exchange as well as its Cotton Leadership and Cotton Coalition programs. He is a Board member of Cotton Incorporated and has served on the Tennessee Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation board and on the Kentucky Farm BureauÕs cotton advisory board. The recipient of the Cotton and Rice ConferenceÕs 2007 Conservation Systems Farmer of the Year Award, Lindamood has reported on his precision agriculture activities and techniques at several agriculture information forums.

Lessons From The Scott Learning Center
Presented by Jay Mahaffey
Science Fellow, Monsanto Company
The Scott Learning Center (SLC) is a 350 acre demonstration and research farm located in Scott, MS. The primary purpose of the SLC is to demonstrate components of the modern farming system that can be used to optimize crop production. 2017 projects included evaluations of precision ag tools, planting techniques, and the latest cotton, soybean and corn varieties/hybrids. The SLC also conducts novel investigations into basic agricultural concepts including the flex characteristics of new Dekalb corn hybrids, the PGR response of Deltapine cotton varieties and a wide variety of Asgrow soybean agronomic evaluations. This session is to provide an update to the farm community on the latest results from the 2017 Scott Learning Center research program.

PhytoGen Cotton Development Specialist, Dow AgroSciences
Presented byDr. Chris Main

Learning Center Manager, Monsanto
PhytoGen¨ brand varieties with WideStrike¨ 3 Insect Protection and the Enlistª cotton trait offer improved control of yield-robbing pests, diseases and weeds, while delivering the high yield and premium fiber quality growers have come to expect from PhytoGen. Chris Main, Ph.D., cotton development specialist for the upper Midsouth, will explain how PhytoGen can help growers thrive with W3FE varieties featuring elite traits, such as bacterial blight resistance. Main also will feature performance data from on-farm and university variety trials throughout the north Delta and Tennessee.

Reducing Costs With Skip-Row Cotton In No-Till Production
Presented by Nick McMichen
Alabama Farmer: Cotton, Corn, Peanuts, Soybeans, Wheat
McMichen has his eyes set on keeping cotton profitable. That's why he focuses on planting skip-row cotton. He finds that by planting two rows and skipping the third, it saves him $70 an acre. He also uses cover crops and rotation with grain which helps keep weeds down. He will share his experience of 28 years of farming to help others be more profitable. He attended Gadsden State Community College in Gadston, Al, with plans to work toward a degree in agronomy and soils. However, an opportunity arose to double the size of the farm, so he left school to pursue that opportunity.

Cotton Diseases And Insect Control As Resistance Appears
Presented by Tucker Miller III
Mississippi Consultant, Cotton, Soybeans, Corn, Peanuts, Vegetables Mississippi Farmer: Soybeans, Wheat, Corn, Cotton Miller Entomological Services, Inc.
Miller keeps up with new chemistries to control insects, and will discuss the latest in resistant cotton diseases, citing that two particular issues that raised their heads the past year are target leaf spot and bacterial blight. He notes also that resistance has sprung up for the old Bollgard II treatments, and recommends the use of the diamide class of treatment for bollworms. He consults on 25,000 acres of cotton, 5,000 acres each of soybeans and corn, as well as 1,000 acres each of peanuts and vegetables. He grew up on a farm where cotton, soybeans and rice were raised; on his own 2,000 acres, he raises soybeans, wheat and corn, but also raises cotton some years. Miller has been consulting for 47 years and has a BachelorÕs Degree in agronomy and a MasterÕs Degree in plant pathology, weed science and entomology all from Mississippi State.

FOV4: Strategic Threat To U. S. Cotton Production
Presented by Dr. Robert Loring Nichols
Senior Director, Cotton Incorporated
Fusarium wilt, caused by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. vasinfectum race 1 (FOV1) was the most damaging fungal disease of cotton in the 1970's. The disease was managed by suppressing root-knot nematode (RKN). In the early 2000's, a new race of FOV not associated with RKN was discovered in the San Joaquin Valley of California. The new disease was FOV race 4 (FOV4), a root-rotting pathogen native to Asia. While there are Pima varieties with very good tolerance, no true resistance has been found in either Pima or Upland. Tolerance in most Upland cotton cultivars is not well characterized. In 2017 FOV4 was formally discovered in the Upper Rio Grande Valley of NM and TX. A strong phytosanitary effort will be needed to contain it. Support for breeding and pathology are urgently needed to manage it.

9C-2 My Experiences With Farmers Growing Extend Cotton
Presented by Todd Rankin
Tennessee Consultant: Cotton
As a resident of the Palmer Pigweed capital of the world, Rankin knows the difficulties of keeping cotton fields clean. He finds that growing Extend cotton and using Dicamba, Roundup or Liberty herbicides on this crop is a big improvement over conventional cotton seed. "It's not 100 percent, it's a big improvement but still not a guarantee," he says. In his talk, he will present his experiences with this system. Rankin holds a bachelor's degree in agriculture from the University of Tennessee-Martin and is a Certified Crop Consultant (CCA) on the national and state of Tennessee levels. He has been in this line of work for 20 years, and received his CCA 15 years ago.

Properly Selecting Inputs To Maximize Returns Within The Upper MidSouth Cotton Production System
Presented by Tyson Raper
Cotton and Small Grains Specialis, University of Tennessee
Cotton production consists of a continuous stream of decisions on whether or not to apply, which products to apply, and application timings. The landscape has changed in recent years due to the onset of new disease(s), shifts in pest populations, and adjustments to nutrient requirements. Still, the basics of profitable management have not changed. In this presentation, field trials evaluating plant growth regulator use, fungicides, fertility, and varieties will be summarized and consolidated into a management approach which intends to maximize returns within the production system.

Improving Soil Health
Presented by Dr. Bill Robertson
Professor, Cotton Extension Agronomist, University of Arkansas System, Division of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service
A great deal of information exists regarding the benefits of improving soil health. However, there is no one easy test or measure of soil health. An important step in the process of improving is knowing where you started. The ability to produce high yields does not necessarily indicate a healthy soil. We will discuss things we can learn from using a soil probe, shovel, and the power of observation.

Cover Crops For Compaction Remediation On Tennessee Valley Soils
Presented by Tyler Sandlin
Extension Agronomist, North AL - Auburn University
Many farmers utilize no-till or minimum tillage systems within the Tennessee Valley region of Alabama. This has resulted in positive benefits for the majority of growers utilizing these systems long term. However, many of these fields have developed a compaction layer in the upper four to six inches of the soil profile because of continued traffic patterns and no soil cultivation. This upper compaction layer has resulted many fields displaying early season nutrient deficiencies and impeded water infiltration. Farmers want to keep their no-till systems in place but also would like to find a way to break up this compaction layer without using tillage. Farmers in this region have expressed concerns with using cover crops to accomplish this, stating that they must be able to effectively plant into a terminated cover crop and establish their cotton crop with conventional equipment they currently possess. This talk will cover our preliminary findings related to these issues and their effects on cotton and other cropping systems.

Controlling Target Spot In Cotton & Soybeans With Priaxor¨ Fungicide
Presented by John Schultz
Technical Service Representative, Arkansas and Missouri Bootheel, BASF Corporation
John Schultz, Technical Service Representative with BASF, will talk through the history of target spot in the Delta and some of the agronomic reasons itÕs become such a problem for both cotton and soybean growers in the Mid-South. He and a grower/consultant will add their thoughts on how target spot affects a plantÕs health and yield potential and how to best control this disease so that growers can get the most out of their cotton and soybean acres.

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly: Weed Management In Xtend Cotton
Presented by Dr. Larry Steckel
Extension/Research Weed Scientist, University of Tennessee
Presented by Drake Copeland
Graduate Research Assistant, University of Tennessee
Nine weed species have now been identified as glyphosate-resistant (GR) in the Mid-South. Of these, three species horseweed, Palmer amaranth, and Italian ryegrass have caused cotton growers the most wide-spread problem. Partially in response to these GR weeds, in 2017, Tennessee cotton growers planted 85% of their cotton acres to an Xtend cotton variety. The weed control that a dicamba-based weed management system provided farmers in 2017 was very good. The cotton crop as a whole was as pigweed free by the fall as has been achieve in over a decade. Moreover, many cotton growers have stated that this was the first year a weed chopping crew was not needed in many years. Unfortunately, the results of weed management in Xtend cotton was not all good, as many of these same growers also struggled to keep dicamba in the cotton field. The bad results of all the off-target movement of dicamba resulted in some ugly relationships between neighbors. Our presentation will give a brief over view on the good and the bad results from the 2017 Xtend weed management system. Moreover, some of the latest research on best management practices that can optimize weed control in Xtend cotton will be highlighted. Moreover dicamba stewardship in Xtend cotton will be reviewed. Lastly, how best to execute any new regulations of dicamba in Xtend cotton will be discussed.

Cotton Irrigation Using The Crop Water App And Soil Moisture Sensors
Presented by Dr. Gene Stevens
Extension Professor-Cropping Systems, University of Missouri-Fisher Delta Research Center
Presented by John Hester
Area Engineer, USDA-ARS
The Crop Water Use phone app used to manage cotton irrigation in Missouri was developed from the Arkansas Irrigation Scheduler. Farmers have the option of entering rainfall amounts from their gauges or allow the program to automatically enter radar estimates from the National Weather Service. Evapotranspiration is calculated in the app from links to the Missouri Extension weather station network. For farms located outside the network, we evaluated using ETgages. In 2017, we also tested Watermark soil moisture sensors in cotton with the Irromesh telemetry system.

Improving Irrigation Water Use Efficiency
Presented by Steve Stevens
Arkansas Farmer: Cotton, Corn, Soybean
Stevens raises 250 acres of corn, 1050 acres of cotton and 3,200 acres of soybeans. He has been farming on his own for 44 years, having grown up on the farm he now works. He attended the University of Arkansas and majored in business.

Engenia¨ Herbicide On Target Best Practices
Presented by Dr. Dan Westberg
Technical Service Manager, Diversified Region, BASF Corporation
Growers take their land, crops and legacies seriously. And the hard work they put in day after day demonstrates a true commitment to stewarding the landÑ theirs and their neighbors'. BASF is working hand in glove with growers, as well as retailers and spray applicators, to provide the tools and resources they need to be effective and responsible managers. In this session, Dr. Dan Westberg will provide an overview of the new label requirements for the 2018 season and best practices to ensure an on-target application.