As university trial results roll in, several PhytoGen® W3FE varieties are topping the list and garnering attention across cotton states.
For producers looking to make the most of high cotton prices going into the 2022 season, regional agronomists say these trial winners should not be overlooked.
PhytoGen won both the Mississippi State Official Variety Trial (OVT) and MSU On-Farm Trials in 2021. PhytoGen brand PHY 411 W3FE was the top variety in the MSU OVT across all locations. In the two-year Delta trial, PHY 411 W3FE and PHY 443 W3FE ranked first and second, with a 99 to 78 lb./A lead over the closest competitor, respectively. PHY 411 W3FE averaged 1,703 lb./A across Delta locations.
PHY 411 W3FE and PHY 443 W3FE were also the top two varieties in the MSU On-Farm Trials across all locations, where PhytoGen had the No. 1 variety for three seasons in a row. In the Delta locations, PhytoGen took gold, silver and bronze medals with PHY 443 W3FE, PHY 332 W3FE and PHY 411 W3FE, respectively. In the Delta, PHY 443 W3FE outyielded the closest competitor by 107 lb./A.
Tom Eubank, Ph.D., PhytoGen cotton development specialist for Mississippi, said excitement is building in his state about the yield potential – and other benefits – of these varieties.
"PhytoGen is known for bringing new innovations to Mississippi cotton producers, and we've done that again with these newer varieties," Eubank said. "We are proving our high yield potential in the MSU trials, but growers get more than high yields. These varieties offer a unique combination of resistance to pests such as root-knot nematodes, reniform nematodes and bacterial blight."
Eubank said many producers have higher nematode populations than they realize, and the winning PhytoGen varieties all provide season-long protection against both root-knot and reniform nematodes. With built-in protection, plants are healthier throughout the season, and producers can save on input costs. Studies show these varieties also help lower nematode populations, improving soils for future seasons.
Mississippi producers also benefit from the Enlist® weed control system, which offers greater compatibility with crops such as soybeans and peanuts. The system provides flexibility with more tank-mix partners, easier cleanout, and a longer application window.
Gold medals in Louisiana and Arkansas
In the 2021 Louisiana State University OVT, PHY 411 W3FE won first place and outyielded the closest competitor by 86 lb./A. It's a similar story with the LSU On-Farm Core Block Demonstrations, where PHY 411 W3FE won the trial by 81 lb./A and PHY 400 W3FE came in third, running a close race for second place.
According to Jonathan Siebert, Ph.D., PhytoGen cotton development specialist for Louisiana, these varieties give Louisiana producers two of the highest yielding varieties for the state with the latest tools to combat weeds and pests.
"The performance of PHY 411 W3FE and PHY 400 W3FE in these third-party trials demonstrate their high-yield potential that will give growers an opportunity to increase the profitability of their cotton acres," Siebert said. "Producers also get better plant health and stability throughout the season from leading early season vigor and PhytoGen Breeding Traits."
Strong genetics combined with season-long protection against diseases and pests improves consistency across varying soils, weather and agronomic regions. That's another reason these varieties repeatedly perform well in university trials throughout the South.
In Arkansas, PHY 411 W3FE ranked No. 1 for highest yield in the University of Arkansas County Cotton Variety Tests, averaging 1,545 lb./A across seven locations. PHY 411 W3FE was the trial winner in four of the counties. Chad Brewer, Ph.D., is the PhytoGen cotton development specialist in Arkansas, and he said this performance mirrors what he sees in Innovation Trials conducted with growers.
"PHY 411 W3FE will be a top choice for many Arkansas producers and a great addition to the PhytoGen portfolio for our area," Brewer said. "Cotton acres vary widely, with different soils types and unique challenges for every field and farm. With the breadth of our variety portfolio, we can help growers find the right variety for every acre."