Grower Perspective

New weed control protects high, consistent yields of PhytoGen cottonseed

Georgia cotton grower Randy Dixon used the Enlist® weed control system on his farm’s worst pigweed-infested fields

Georgia cotton grower Randy Dixon used the Enlist® weed control system on his farm’s worst pigweed-infested fields, and two words sum up his experience: spotless and easy.

“Twenty years ago, I didn’t know what pigweed looked like. Sicklepod was our worst weed then, but now it’s all pigweed. It’s the worst thing,” Dixon says. “We planted the PhytoGen Enlist varieties on our rented land with the most pigweeds – and thanks to the Enlist weed control system, it’s now spotless.”

Dixon, who farms in Screven and Burke counties, planted two varieties with the Enlist cotton trait in 2017, PhytoGen® brand PHY 490 W3FE and PHY 450 W3FE. “The Enlist technology works with our nearby peanut acreage,” he says. PhytoGen W3FE varieties are not susceptible to the 2,4-DB he uses on his peanut fields.

Dixon planted his PhytoGen cottonseed with the Enlist® trait “row to row” with peanuts, not even leaving a skip between crops. His weed control program on the acreage planted to PhytoGen W3FE varieties included a preplant residual herbicide incorporated at planting, followed by an Enlist Duo® herbicide application near the end of May. The acreage with the toughest weed challenges received an additional tank mix of Enlist One herbicide and glufosinate.

“The best combination of anything we’ve had for pigweed control is Enlist One plus glufosinate. We put it out there because it was the worst pressure we’ve seen, and we had peanuts all around that cotton,” Dixon says. “In my world, the main crop is peanuts, and it’s all near or around cotton. The Enlist system is the best system for me.”

Dependable yield, quality

On fields where glyphosate-resistant weed pressure was not an issue, Dixon planted one of his all-time favorite varieties, a proven high yielder with industry-leading fiber quality.

“If I had to pick one variety from all the varieties available in my lifetime, it would be PHY 444 WRF. It’s got extremely strong yield, quality and the early vigor I need,” Dixon says. “With our new round bale pickers, we can usually pick high-yielding cotton in second gear. With PHY 444 WRF, we’re averaging more than three bales to the acre. This year, we had to slow up in first gear because of the incredibly high volume of fiber going into the picker. We’ve never had to do that before, but it yielded that well.”

Dixon said the yield of PhytoGen brand PHY 444 WRF comes with fiber quality unrivaled in the Upland market. That yield and quality combination helps him thrive.

“PHY 444 WRF is the best quality cotton I’ve ever had, with the best premiums. It’s a given that our highest grades come from PHY 444 WRF,” he says. “It’s not common to have a high yielder and a high grader, but PHY 444 WRF does both.”

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