I was in cotton yesterday checking for disease and saw a few whiteflies. There were not many, so I don’t think we should be concerned bad. This was in Meigs. Usually, we see whiteflies in Pavo. This is because of the vegetable production from Colquitt County that is closer to us.
If you see whiteflies, check under the 5th leaf for immatures. They look like little lemons. I have a picture of what bad whitefly populations look like under a soybean leaf. If you find whiteflies you should avoid using dicrotophos alone (Bidrin or others) or limit its use for stink bugs, as it could allow whiteflies to flare.
The following is the method to check for whiteflies thanks to Irwin County Agent Phillip Edwards:
1) Count down from the terminal of the plant to the fifth vegetative leaf (starting with any leaf that is the size of a quarter or bigger).
2) Slowly turn the 5th leaf over to view the underside of the leaf.
3) See if there are any immature whiteflies present. If 50% or more of the 5th leaves checked have multiple immatures on them, then treatments should be started.
Insect growth regulators like Knack or Courier can be used if the population is not too high. These options are slow acting, and results are not seen until 5 to 7 days after treatment. If populations have already exploded, then other insecticide options may be needed.