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Cotton Yield Variability and Correlations Between Yield, Previous Yield, and Soil Properties

M.K. Elms and C.J. Green


Precision agriculture technologies are providing an opportunity to manage fields as separate units instead of one management unit. These technologies are valuable because soil and crop parameters often vary spatially and temporally within a field. However, relatively little spatial and temporal variability data are available for cotton. This experiment was conducted to study variability of an irrigated cotton field. At 57 points (0.23 acre grid size) within a field, cotton yield and quality parameters and soil properties were determined. Yield was more variable than were other plant parameters, but was correlated to yield in the previous season. The number of fruiting sites per plant and fiber length were also correlated to their values in the previous season. Nitrate and zinc had the highest spatial variability of the soil parameters measured, and the soil parameters with the lowest variability were sand percentage, organic matter percentage, pH, potassium, and copper. Preliminary correlation analyses for relationships between soil and plant parameters showed relatively few significant relationships.

Reprinted from Proceedings of the 1998 Beltwide Cotton Conferences pp. 630 - 636
©National Cotton Council, Memphis TN

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Document last modified Sunday, Dec 6 1998