Rotate Chemistries To Control Plant Bugs


I was born and raised in Central Florida, and after graduating college, I did several internships with citrus growers and crop protection companies. Although I didn’t grow up on a farm, I fell in love with the agriculture industry and decided to continue my education. After completing my Ph.D., I went to work for Dow AgroSciences, which later became Corteva Agriscience, as a market development and new technology specialist.

As a technical resource for all existing and new technologies in our crop protection portfolio, my day to day consists of educating our territory managers on how to use the products in our Mid-South portfolio in the most effective way possible. Additionally, I frequently speak at grower meetings, demo days and scientific societies.

Across the Mid-South, our cotton crop is looking good overall. We’ve had a lot of warm temperatures and sunlight, which are conducive for cotton growth and development. On top of that, we have some of the highest cotton prices we have seen in quite some time. Therefore, the 2018 season could be a good year for our cotton farmers.

To protect the cotton crop, it’s important to control tarnished plant bugs, which target the plant’s reproductive stage. During pre-bloom, they feed either on the terminals or small squares, leaving yellow, brown or black discoloration on the squares. In a worst-case scenario the squares fall off the plant, or abort. This is potential cotton that is now lost. At the bloom stage, plant bugs can still attack the small squares and sometimes feed on the bolls themselves. We focus on trying to control this pest early season and during bloom so it doesn’t rob cotton farmers of yield.
Transform WG insecticide received Section 18 emergency exemptions in several cotton- and grain sorghum-producing states again this year. We recommend using Transform in a full season approach with other insecticide modes of action that are active on tarnished plant bugs.

Back-to-back applications of Transform at 1.5 ounces per acre during bloom, often followed by a third application of an imidachloprid or Diamond or Bidrin, have been extremely effective. It’s important to use Transform as a resistance management tool in a rotational program with other chemistry classes. Transform specifically targets plant bugs; therefore, it does not flare mites or harm beneficial insects.

We’ve experienced good environmental conditions so far. Our PhytoGen varieties with WideStrike 3 Insect Protection and the Enlist cotton trait (W3FE) look outstanding. I am hopeful the excellent weed control coupled with effective insect management contribute to a great season for our farmers.

Ryan Miller, Ph.D. Market Development & New Technology Specialist Corteva Agriscience™ Little Rock, Arkansas
  • B.S., crop science, Florida Southern College; M.S., weed science, University of Florida; Ph.D., weed science, University of Arkansas
  • Member of the Beltwide Cotton Society and makes presentations at the Beltwide Cotton Conferences
  • Member of the Arkansas Crop Protection Association and the Rice Technical Working Group
  • Member of the Southern Weed Science Society and the Weed Science Society of America
  • Married to wife, Erica
  • Enjoys golfing as well as hunting, fishing and traveling with his wife

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