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LOGO: Journal of Cotton Science

 

Effect of Leaf Pubescence on Tarnished Plant Bug (Hemiptera: Miridae) Ability to Cause Damage and Yield Loss in Cotton

Authors: Wilks Wood, Jeff Gore, Angus Catchot, Don Cook, Darrin Dodds, and L. Jason Krutz
Pages: 122-127
Arthropod Management

The tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois), is the most important insect pest of cotton in the states of Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana, Missouri, and Tennessee. Numerous insecticide applications are required during a growing season to manage this insect, and these associated costs are unsustainably high for growers. Cultural practices could provide an inexpensive means to manage the tarnished plant bug. Experiments were conducted at the Mississippi State University, Delta Research and Extension Center, to determine the impact of leaf pubescence on tarnished plant bug feeding that results in reduced cotton yields. Three separate varieties, each possessing differing levels of pubescence, were utilized to determine if there was any effect on tarnished plant bug density and damage. Varieties possessing high numbers of trichomes retained significantly more squares and yielded significantly higher than varieties with fewer trichomes. The variety with the fewest number of trichomes sustained significantly greater injury and yield loss than the other varieties utilized in this experiment. Variety selection could be an inexpensive cultural practice used to combat rising input costs associated with cotton production.