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Ken Hall grows PhytoGen® brand varieties on 100 percent of his cotton acres. He recounts his experience with the vigor, yield and fiber quality that helps him thrive. Hall says the Enlist™ weed control system does an excellent job against glyphosate-resistant Palmer amaranth and morningglory. Since growing PhytoGen brand varieties with WideStrike® 3 Insect Protection, he has not made one overspray for bollworm or budworm.
“I am a third-generation farmer in a family operation that rotates cotton and peanuts on 3,000 acres in Worth and Turner counties, Georgia. We strip-till cotton using a wheat cover crop, and 90 percent of our acres are irrigated. Years ago, I planted the top three or four varieties from different seed companies spaced out over 1,800 acres.
“I watched them throughout the season and quickly found out the PhytoGen varieties jumped out of the ground and had the most vigor. Soon after that, I was 100 percent PhytoGen and have been ever since.
“Last year, we grew PHY 444 WRF, PHY 440 W3FE and PHY 480 W3FE. The standout variety was PHY 444 WRF, averaging nearly 1,600 pounds per acre. In areas where we have high nematode populations, we planted PHY 440 W3FE and PHY 480 W3FE.
“In 2018, one field of PHY 440 W3FE made 1,100 pounds per acre — a 300-pound increase over the PHY 444 WRF I had planted there the year before. PHY 480 W3FE has yielded exceptionally well, too. This variety is consistently in the 1,300-pounds-per-acre range on land with significant nematode populations.
“PhytoGen varieties also have great fiber quality. We won the University of Georgia cotton quality award in our area in 2010, 2016 and 2017 with a premium average of 2.85, 5.12 and 3.92 cents above loan, respectively. The 2016 season was exceptional, especially during harvest.
In the past, we resorted to hand labor to rid our fields of hard-to-control weeds. Now we use a tank-mix of Enlist One and Liberty herbicides, which does an excellent job controlling glyphosate-resistant Palmer amaranth and morningglory. Farmers need to protect this technology by applying it right and putting it out on time.”