August 7, 2018, the USDA-ARS Cropping Systems Research Laboratory (CSRL) at Lubbock, Texas, hosted its first field day, welcoming producers, scientists and the general public to walk among its research fields while hearing from many of its scientists about various research projects in cotton, sorghum and peanuts.
No matter the commodity though, increased water efficiency and profitable production with limited water or irrigation, seemed to be a common theme as scientists discussed their projects.
For example, Whole Plant Physiologist Dr. Dennis Gitz discussed a cotton experiment in which a tomato gene is inserted into a cotton plant to test its effect on yield and water use efficiency. Thus far, the study has shown that cotton plants with this tomato gene continued to grow and produce fiber under drought conditions where normal plants had stopped growing, according to Gitz. "Over the course of a preliminary small scale pilot study, cotton yield was increased by 50 percent."
To learn more about the Lubbock CSRL, click here.