Monthly Archives: April 2016

Satsuma Fertilization

Satsuma-NewGrowth 003

Blooms & new growth

Blooms & new growth

Thanks to Lowndes County Agent Jake Price who did a good job coordinating Monday’s Satsuma Meeting. We talked about citrus greening, fungal disease, and fertility programs.

We’re actually a few weeks past beginning bloom here, and with a warmer winter, we are seeing lots of terminal growth this year already. These trees are in their 2nd and 3rd year, and the fruit will not quite be tasty yet. Many of these blooms will actually be removed. Limbs of Owari grow outward, and many of the fruit can touch the ground with a younger tree. All of the varieties are self-fruitful, so no pollinizer trees are required. Bees may also help, but are not required.

Fertility Program

Our pH needs to around 6.0. A wider range is between 5.5 and 7.0. We need to lime if we are 5.5 or lower. In this range, nutrients are most available for uptake for Satsuma.

When we fertilize, much of our rates are based on N, since they are considered ‘heavy feeders.’ We start fertilizing at

  1. First sign of budbreak in the Spring (late Feb/early March)
  2. Fruit swell (May)
  3. Fruit are 1 inch in diameter (June)

We don’t want to use fertilizer with N from September to mid-February since this could comprismise cold hardiness.

We can use either a complete fertilizer (8-8-8) or a straight N fertilizer (34-0-0), or a combination. We only use a straight fertilizer if soil tests and leaf analysis show other elements are not necessary. Here is a general baseline N recommendation for Satsumas of different ages from research in Alabama:


Poultry Litter

Some planting this year will use poultry litter. The fertilizer value of poultry litter depends on many factors like moisture, temperature, feed rations, storage, and handling. It is best to check analysis of poultry litter. Poultry liter has an approximate analysis of 3-3-2 (60lbN – 60lb p2O5 – 40lbK2O). Here is some poultry liter rates from UGA Extension Fruit Scientist Dr. Erick Smith:


Satsuma Meeting in Lowndes County

Satsuma Meeting in Lowndes County



Leave a comment

Filed under Citrus, Fertility

Pine Trees Bending?

Longleaf PIne

Here are some five year old long leaf pine trees where the terminals are bending or twisting awkwardly. This growth occurs when something physical breaks the terminal as they are young. Sometimes wind is to blame. There is also someone who noticed crows breaking terminals.


You’ll notice in the picture how much growth by the new terminals. Since these pines were planted on the edge of a yard, sort of residential situation, they are getting more fertilizer from grass. They are also likely in a really good spot. This extra growth also effects how these trees are bending. In this situation, you would not want to put any more fertilizer.

Mowing injury at the base causes pitch canker

Mowing injury at the base causes pitch canker

Leave a comment

Filed under Forestry

Pond Weeds – Yellow Iris

PondWeed (2)

Yellow Iris Flower

Yellow Iris Flower

Here is a yellow flower thing growing by the pond I’ve never seen. It turns out to be Yellow Iris (Iris pseudacorus). It’s an herbaceous perennial with stuff leaves. It reproduces by floating seed and rhizomes. Up North, it is listed as a noxious weed, but UGA Extension Aquaculture Scientist Dr. Gary Burtle recommends leaving a margin of these plants along the shoreline to prevent erosion. The only thing we need to do is mow to leave a 3 to 5 ft strip.

Yellow Iris

Yellow Iris

Leave a comment

Filed under Aquatic Environments

2016 Thrips Management In Peanuts

Here is an update form UGA Extension Entomologist Dr. Mark Abney:

Peanut seed are going in the ground in Georgia, and that means thrips and thrips management questions are coming. The following is an updated version of the thrips management summary for 2016. This list is not all inclusive, but it provides information about some of the more popular management practices.

1. Phorate (Thimet 20G) in furrow: Thimet has been around for a long time, and we have years (decades really) of data that show Thimet does a good job of reducing thrips injury, and that it can also reduce the incidence of tomato spotted wilt virus. Thimet is an organophosphate insecticide, and as with all pesticides, growers should read and follow label instructions carefully. Some phytotoxicity (aka “Thimet burn”) is commonly observed when Thimet is applied to peanut, but this injury has not been associated with lost productivity.

2. Thiamethoxam (CruiserMaxx Peanut) seed treatment: Thiamethoxam is the active ingredient in CruiserMaxx Peanut seed treatment. Growers should be aware that moderate to severe thrips feeding injury has been observed on thiamethoxam treated peanut when thrips pressure is high. While we do not currently recommend an automatic foliar insecticide application for thrips on CruiserMaxx Peanut, we highly recommend that growers regularly scout their fields for the presence of adult and immature thrips beginning soon after seedling emergence. The presence of reproducing thips may signal the need for a foliar insecticide application.  Thiamethoxam does not reduce the risk of tomato spotted wilt in peanut.

3. Imidacloprid (Admire Pro, Velum Total, various generics) liquid in-furrow: Imidacloprid applied as a liquid in the furrow at planting has given good control of thrips  in trials at UGA and other Southeastern universities in recent years. Imidacloprid has been shown to be compatible with most liquid inoculants and fungicides (not all combinations of products have been tested). Like thiamethoxam, imidacloprid will not reduce the risk of tomato spotted wilt in peanut. Growers should also take careful note of the formulation of the product they plan to use as rates vary by formulation. Applying a 2F product at a 4F product rate will result in significantly less active ingredient than the label recommendation. Velum Total contains both imidacloprid and an active ingredient targeting nematodes. Growers who want to use imidacloprid for thrips but who do not have a nematode problem do not need to invest in the additional AI, but should choose a stand alone imidacloprid product (e.g. Admire Pro).

NOTE ABOUT INSECTICIDE RESISTANCE: Thiamethoxam and imidacloprid are in the neonicotinoid class of insecticides. Populations of tobacco thrips with reduced susceptibility to neonicotinoids were documented in 2015. No control failures have been reported in Georgia to date. Resistance monitoring will continue in 2016.

4. Acephate (Orthene) foliar spray: Orthene will still kill thrips, and we use it regularly in GA when at-plant insecticides “run out of steam”. The problem associated with leaving off an at-plant application in favor of a foliar spray alone is timing. This approach requires careful scouting (something that is much less common on our peanut acreage than it should be) and the ability to get into the field on short notice to make an application. Given the hectic schedule of most growers in the spring and the potential for unfavorable weather, being able to cover large acreage with a foliar application is a gamble most growers should avoid.

No matter what thrips management tactic is chosen, scouting is still a good idea. Nothing provides 100% control 100% of the time, and the only way to know if a problem is developing is to monitor fields regularly. Price of inputs will be an important factor in decision making in 2016. We need to be sure NOT to cut labeled rates in an effort to save money…reduced rates will likely lead to reduced efficacy and can ultimately cost more in supplemental treatments and/or lost productivity. Another thing to consider is that peanuts planted before 10 May are at an increased risk for tomato spotted wilt virus; none of the insecticides registered for thrips control in peanut will reduce the risk of the disease except Thimet.

The traps for our thrips flight monitoring program for 2016 will go out this week; we will begin posting weekly updates on this blog next week.

Leave a comment

Filed under Entomology, Peanuts

Prowl vs. Sonalan In Peanuts

Here is an update from UGA Extension Peanut Weed Scientist Dr. Eric Prostko on Prowl and Sonalan.

Recent price increases in Sonalan 3EC (ethalfluralin) have many growers taking a closer look at the cheaper priced pendimethalin formulations (Generic Prowl 3.3EC and Prowl H2O 3.8ASC) for use in peanuts.  With the exception of use in reduced tillage systems (i.e. Prowl is preferred there), there have been no consistent differences in peanut tolerance and weed efficacy between Sonalan and Prowl in peanut (Table 1). It has always been my position that I have no preference between these two herbicides and that every peanut acre in Georgia should be treated with one of them.  If a grower is trying to save a few bucks on input costs, there is no reason not to use a cheaper formulation.


A couple of other comments about this issue:

1) The Weed Science Group at UGA has not been able to detect any major differences in the performance between Prowl 3.3EC and Prowl H20 3.8ASC.
2) 2016 estimated costs for 1 qt/A are as follows:  Sonalan 3EC = $10.50; Generic Prowl 3.3EC = $6.75; and Prowl H2O 3.8ASC = $8.75.
3) The lb ai/A for each formulation are slightly different at the 1 qt/A typical use rate as follows:  Sonalan 3EC = 0.75 lb ai/A; Generic Prowl 3.3EC = 0.83 lb ai/A; and Prowl H2O 3.8ASC = 0.95 lb ai/A.  This might need to be considered when figuring the true cost differences per acre.  

Leave a comment

Filed under Peanuts, Weed Science

Warm March

Satsuma-NewGrowth 003

Though we did experience some cool weather last month, March was still warmer and drier than normal. We saw soil temperatures approach 65 degrees a few times. We didn’t have a freeze at Easter. Our satsumas have benefited from this warm weather and are in full bloom now. This helps our neighbor’s peach crop in Brooks County as well. Warm weather has also given us good planting conditions for corn. University of Georgia Extension Climatologist Pam Knox has this update on March temperatures:

March was drier and warmer than normal across Georgia, ushering in projections for a warmer and wetter than normal spring.

Warm conditions statewide caused early blooming of many trees and flowers, leading to very high pollen counts, which were not helped by the lack of rain needed to wash away the pollen. Early blooming in the northeastern part of the state led the National Weather Service to start issuing frost warnings there earlier than usual because of farmers’ concerns about the fruit trees.

In spite of the cold weather in late March, most fruit trees across Georgia were not affected by frost, and a good and flavorful peach crop is expected this year unless a very late frost occurs in April.

The lack of rainfall caused abnormally dry conditions across the state. This allowed farmers to get into the fields to plant and apply chemical, but dry conditions caused some concerns for germinating crops.

Wet conditions in the southwest corner of the state hampered farmers’ ability to work in the fields and led to the development of some fungal diseases by the end of the month.

The outlook for April does show colder temperatures in the beginning of the month, but a return to warmer conditions later. Precipitation is expected to be above normal for the first half of the month, but drier conditions may return in the last two weeks.

Warm March

Georgia saw well above normal temperatures in March, ranging from 3 to 6 degrees above the 1981-2010 average.

  • In Atlanta, Georgia, the monthly average temperature was 60.5 degrees Fahrenheit, 6.2 degrees above normal;
  • the Athens, Georgia, average was 59.9 F, 5.6 degrees above normal;
  • the Columbus, Georgia, average was 61.9 F, 4.1 degrees above normal;
  • the Macon, Georgia average was 61.1 F, 4.3 degrees above normal;
  • the Savannah, Georgia, average was 65.0 F, 5.8 degrees above normal;
  • the Brunswick, Georgia, average was 64.9 F, 4.6 degrees above normal;
  • the Alma, Georgia, average was 63.6 F, 3.4 degrees above normal;
  • the Augusta, Georgia, average was 60.8 F, 4.9 degrees above normal;
  • the Albany, Georgia, average was 63.7 F, 4.5 degrees above normal;
  • the Rome, Georgia, average was 56.8 F, 4.7 degrees above above normal;
  • the Valdosta, Georgia, average was 64.7 F, 4.6 degrees above normal.

Multiple records for daytime high temperatures were set on March 15 across the state. Atlanta reported 85 F; Athens, 86 F; Alma, 87 F; and Columbus, 87 F, breaking the old records of 82 F, 85 F, 86 F and 86 F, respectively, all set in 2012.

Macon also tied its record of 87 F on the same day, and Augusta, Savannah and Brunswick tied records on or near that date. Brunswick also broke a record high on March 14, recording 84 F, which surpassed the old record of 83 F set in 1975.


Leave a comment

Filed under Weather

Tan Spot In Triticale


Triticale-TanSpot 006

Here is a field of triticale with a pathogen I have not seen before. I noticed these diamond-shaped lesions with a yellow border and dark brown spot in the center of lower leaves. It is called Tan Spot (Yellow leaf spot or Blotch) and is caused by Pyrenophora (Syn. Drechslera) spp. Disease development is favored by frequent rains and cool, cloudy, humid weather. I also noticed some of the leaf tips dying – this is also a symptom.

Lesions may coalesce, causing tip of leaf to die

Lesions may coalesce, causing tip of leaf to die

UGA Extension Pathologist Dr. Alfredo Martinez has this information:

The disease is more problematic susceptible varieties, poor fertility and in fields with wheat residue left on soil surface. Initial infections come from diseased crop debris in the soil, or from diseased grass hosts. Usually the lower leaves are infected first, and the disease progresses to the upper leaves and leaf sheaths if conditions are favorable. This disease develops over a wide range of temperatures and is favored by long periods of dew or rain. Crop rotation with non-host crops reduces the severity of tan spot. Seed treatment seems to be effective in reducing the disease.

Fungicides applied timely are effective in reducing the disease severity and improving yield.  Most fungicides are label to be applied up to Feekes 10.5 (fully headed) but before flowering. Only a couple of triazol fungicides are labeled to be applied for Fusarium Head Blight at 10.5.1, which is flowering.

Tan Spot can be serious by itself or it can contribute to other leaf spot complexes, like Stagnospora Glume Blotch, which we saw last year. This field has already been treated with a fungicide, and the pathogen is not highly infected our flag leaf. This is the leaf below the head which is pulling most of the photosynthate to the grain. This is what we are aiming to protect.


Leave a comment

Filed under Disease, Grain

More Rain

As of Friday, reports from growers were that they were able to get in the field and rip higher ground. Rain started again Friday evening, and it gave us five inches in all parts of the county that I hear. This looks like it will set us back another few days from getting back in the field. The sun came out Saturday afternoon, and we’ve had nothing but sunshine since then. Actually, reports are that some put out some fertilizer yesterday and today.

I wanted to show a picture or two of some of the water. There is a creek or branch above us that feeds water into our lake. Our house sits on the edge of the dam with a little spillway. The water running over the spillway woke us up Saturday morning. Here is what it looks like normally and then with water.

Rain 009


Rain 001

Rain water

Rain 006

Rain water

Rain 007

Leave a comment

Filed under Weather

Pecan Budbreak: When To Spray?

PecanBudbreak 003

With Friday’s heavy rain and the arrival of budbreak, pecan growers are anxious to get their first fungicide spray on for scab protection. Infection has historically been bad in our area, and growers like to get started early. Here are some points from UGA Extension Horticulturalist Dr. Lenny Wells:

At this point, the only pecan variety growers should be concerned about is ‘Desirable’. Most varieties that have budded out far to this point are less susceptible to scab and is less of an urgency to get those covered. If ‘Desirable’ is to the point where the leaves are unfolding, and you are located in a scab prone area (below 300′ elevation or surrounded by woods), it may not be a bad idea to spray this week. If the leaves are still tightly enclosed in the form of a swollen bud or you are in an area with good air flow, I would hold off at this point.

For most other varieties, especially Stuart – which is further behind in its progression of bud break – there is no need to spray just yet. While we had significant rain Friday and there is a chance of rain one night this week, low temperatures are forecast to remain in the mid to low 40’s, especially toward the end of the week. The optimum temperature range for scab infection is 59-77 degrees F and a leaf wetness of about 12 hours. If the cooler weather this and last week slows down budbreak, it will likely slow down scab as well. Except for ‘Desirable’ in the situation described above, I would plan on waiting until next week to begin scab sprays in most areas of the state.

For an example of a proven fungicide program to consider see a previous blog post on: Example of Fungicide Program to Manage Scab.

Leave a comment

Filed under Disease, Pecans

Pre-Plant Burndown Options & Plant Back Restrictions For Peanuts

We’ve all been getting some questions about pre-plant burndown options for peanuts. Dooly County Ag Agent Ronnie Barentine and UGA Extension Peanut Weed Scientist Dr. Eric Prostko put together a few thoughts for us consider:

1)    Primary burndown herbicides will either be glyphosate or paraquat.  As we get closer to planting, paraquat might be preferred if a quicker burndown is needed.

2) Potential tank-mix partners with either of the above herbicides include the following:

  • 2,4-D (16 oz/A) – will help improve the control of wild radish and primrose.  Plant-back restriction for peanut based upon UGA research is 7 days.
  • FirstShot (0.5-0.8 oz/A) – will also help improve the control of radish and primrose. This may also be useful in fields where off-target movement of 2,4-D is a concern. Peanut plant-back restriction for FirstShot is 30 days.
  • Aim or ET (1-2 oz/A) – either one of these herbicides can be useful in preplant burndown situations where annual morningglory plants (except smallflower) have already emerged. Aim can be applied anytime preplant up until 24 hours after planting. ET can be applied anytime pre-plant but before peanut emergence.

3) Growers who want to get early residual control of pigweed – especially when there is a potential long delay between application and planting – may want to include Dual Magnum (16 oz/A), Warrant (48 oz/A) or Valor (2 oz/A) in the burndown.  If Valor is used in the pre-plant burndown at least 30 DBP, an additional 2 oz/A can be used PRE after planting. Valor will also help improve the POST control of radish and primrose (+10-15%).  I must admit that I would prefer either Dual or Warrant for residual control in this situation to help protect Valor from potential resistance issues.  There are no peanut plant-back restrictions for Dual or Warrant.

Leave a comment

Filed under Peanuts, Wildlife