Soil Management and Fertilization of Cotton: Present and Future

Joe V. Pettiet and Clinton Pettiet


The farmer continually strives for better ways to produce more cotton with less labor input. Progress has been made using 8-row and 12-row equipment. However, our crop management program will move further toward a reduced tillage, or stale seedbed approach to cotton farming in the future. The seedbed row will be permanently established and maintained.

Present land and fertilizer use practices that ignore the low yielding areas within fields limit cotton yields in the Delta area. It is time that we change from the one-composite soil sample per field concept in soil testing and allow the soil sample (or individual sampling site) to represent an area small enough to delineate the fertility variation with the main goal of eliminating the deficient areas within fields. Infrared aerial photography may prove to be a useful tool to identify the problem areas and assure proper sampling site selections.

Improved soil test calibrations using the boundary line technique on a large number of farmer fields each year will help us to maintain an up-to-date soil testing program for highest cotton yields.

Reprinted from Proceedings: 1989 Beltwide Cotton Production Conference pp. 16 - 17
©National Cotton Council, Memphis TN

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Document last modified Sunday, Dec 6 1998