University of Georgia
Extension Peanut Agronomist
New cultivars are generating excitement and interest. Based on the acreage planted in Georgia, Alabama and Florida in 2009 to produce seed for 2010, approximately 70 percent of the seed supply will be made up of Georgia-06G, Florida-07 and Tifguard. Georgia-06G was on about 36 percent of the acreage planted in 2009 for seed production for 2010, indicating it will account for the largest percentage of the 2010 planted acreage in the Southeast. Georgia-07W and Georgia Greener were planted for seed on seven to 10 percent of the acreage. All of these newer cultivars have varying levels of resistance to tomato spotted wilt virus, leaf spots and white mold. Producers need to evaluate each field they plan to plant in 2010 to see which cultivar or cultivars are best suited for an individual field. Yield potential of these five new cultivars is considerably higher than Georgia Green.
Texas A&M University
Make your winter weed management decisions now, if you have not already. It is critical to control problem weeds prior to planting. Weeds such as Russian thistle (tumbleweed), kochia and marestail (horseweed, mulestail) can be difficult to control when they have gotten larger, bolted and hardened off. In addition, some control options that may be effective now will be unavailable at planting. One key to starting off the season right is planting into a clean, weed-free seedbed. Weed competition is at its highest early in the growing season. Not only are larger weeds getting a jumpstart on the peanut crop, they are also competing when the crop is most vulnerable to yield loss. Finally, many weed control options now help get an additional herbicide mode-of-action in the mix to help combat resistant weed issues, both now and in the future.
North Carolina State University
With the increase in resistant weeds, growers need an intensive preplant incorporated (especially Prowl) and preemergence herbicide program (Dual or Outlook) and to include paraquat (Gramoxone Inteon and other formulations) plus Basagran at 0.5 pint per acre within the first month after planting. Consider including Dual or Outlook with paraquat. Valor SX and Strongarm are good preemergence options as well. An aggressive early season program protects against weed interference and takes selection pressure off the PPO herbicides. We can seldom catch up if we have to begin applying PPO herbicides in early to mid-June. Weed scientists are worried about developing resistance to PPO herbicides. In peanut, this would mean Valor SX, Cobra and Ultra Blazer would no longer be effective. From a resistance standpoint, protect PPO herbicides because they are becoming our last resort from a postemergence perspective.
As planting draws near, farmers are more aware and anxious of commodity prices. Prices have recently fallen across commodities as the dollar somehow gained value through these economic times. However, after the decline in the 2009 peanut acres and the wet harvest, there is some demand for peanuts. Producers decreased acreage during the down market and are anticipating an up swing in price. Farmers in Alabama will not be too quick to sign any contract. After the 2009 crop year, they realized $400 per ton is simply not enough money to cash flow their operation, even in the newer production areas of the state. Farmers have to band together and be patient with the market. After all, not only is their livelihood at stake, but so is everyone else’s that is reading this article. The farmer is first and foremost.