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New nematode-resistant cotton varieties offered for 2021 season

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PhytoGen announced two new cotton varieties with resistance to both reniform and root knot nematodes.

During a Dec. 8 web event, the PhytoGen cotton team announced the official availability of two new cotton varieties with resistance to both reniform and root knot nematodes, plus a new variety specific for the lower Southeast.

The Phytogen introduction of resistance to reniform nematodes is an industry first, said Joel Faircloth, PhytoGen cottonseed manager, "and marks another significant milestone towards protecting the exceptional yield potential of PhytoGen varieties.”

PHY 332 W3FE is an early mid-maturing variety producing a medium-to-tall plant with a semi-smooth leaf with a broad area of adaption. This variety is resistant to bacterial blight, root knot and reniform nematodes.

PHY 443 W3FE is a mid-maturing variety producing a tall plant with semi-smooth leaf with a broad area of adaption. This variety is resistant to bacterial blight, root knot and reniform nematodes.

In trials in fields without nematode pressure in the MidSouth and across the different growing regions of Texas, 332 and 443 yielded as well as non-nematode resistant Phytogen varieties and a leading competitor, said Chris Main, Phytogen cotton development specialist.

In field trials with high nematode pressure, Main said, the two varieties out yielded non-resistant varieties by more than 30%, some as high as 80%. Both varieties have high fiber quality and loan values.

Rodney Moon farms in Harvest, Ala. In a video interview during the webinar, he said he has fields with troublesome levels of reniform nematodes. Part of the PhytoGen Horizon Network of cotton producers, Moon planted the new resistant varieties in 2019 and 2020 and saw 200-pound to 300-pound yield increases over susceptible varieties.

PHY 545 W3FE has been tested on farms since 2019 and is specifically adapted for the lower Southeast and will be available for the 2021 growing season, said Russell Nuti, Phytogen cotton development specialist in the Southeast. It is a mid- to full-maturing variety that falls between PHY 500 W3FE and PHY 580 W3FE varieties. It is resistant to bacterial blight and root knot nematodes.

In lower Southeast trials, 545 averaged 1,439 pounds per acre with exceptional fiber quality and loan value, Nuti said.

Anticipating strong demand for the new varieties, Faircloth said there is "a pretty good supply of all three products for the 2021 season available."

The PhytoGen W3FE varieties come with tolerances to Enlist herbicides, Liberty herbicide (glufosinate) and glyphosate.

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