26 September 2023, Mumbai: Recently, a few cotton-sown areas in the state of Punjab were impacted by the pink bollworm infestation. With the early-sown cotton crop aged between 60 and 80 days, the cotton growing farmers need to integrate all available management tactics that will serve the purpose of resistance management against pink bollworm.
“The pink bollworm penetrates the boll and is difficult to see from outside. Farmers should therefore be vigilant, inspect flowers and cotton bolls promptly detect signs of pink bollworm infestation, and take immediate action. Early observation of flowers is important to detect pink bollworm infestation. If the crop’s flowers appear rose-like, farmers should take immediate action for pink bollworm management,” said Rajavelu N.K, CEO – Crop Protection Business, Godrej Agrovet Limited.
According to him adopting short-duration cotton varieties, practicing crop rotation to discourage pest build-up, disposing of crop residues, and optimizing nitrogenous fertilizer should be used to combat this threat.
Studies have shown that the infestation of the pink bollworm takes place during the medium and the later stages of the cotton crop. Hence insecticides having different modes of action groups should be used in rotation or mixture for effective management of pink bollworms.
For instance, insecticides like 200 grams per ha of Elpida during the first spray at the early square or boll setting stage while 800 ml per ha of Czaar and 1000 ml per ha of Satisfy during the second spray at boll formation and maturation stage can aid farmers to stay ahead of insect resistance and delay its development.
“Using insecticides during the hatching or at the peak development stage is highly recommended. However, being alert at the critical time and sowing resistant cotton varieties right from the beginning will avoid cotton bollworm infestations,” added Mr. Rajavelu.
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