[Background] Cotton fiber quality and seed composition play vital roles in the economics of cotton production systems and the cottonseed meal industry. This research aimed to examine the effects of different irrigation levels and planting geometries on fiber quality and seed composition of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). We conducted a 2-year study in 2018 and 2019 in a warm, humid area in the Southeast United States on Dundee silt loam soil. There were three irrigation treatments in the study. The treatments included irrigating every furrow, or full irrigation (FI), every alternate furrow, or half irrigation (HI), and no irrigation, or rain-fed (RF). Planting geometries were on ridges spaced 102 cm apart and either a single-row (SR) or twin-rows (TR).
[Results] The results of high-volume instrument (HVI), advanced fiber information systems (AFIS) and near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) showed that irrigation and planting treatments played a significant role in fiber quality and seed composition. Across irrigation treatments, significant differences were seen in fiber properties, including fineness, maturity ratio, micronaire, neps, short fiber, strength, uniformity, upper half mean length (UHML), upper quartile length by weight (UQLw), and yellowness (+b). Irrigation and planting geometry (PG) had a significant effect on micronaire, strength, and UHML while their interaction was significant only for micronaire. The micronaire was negatively affected by irrigation as FI-SR, FI-TR, HI-SR, and HI-TR recorded 11% ~ 12% lower over the RF-SR and TR treatments. The PG played a minor role in determining fiber quality traits like micronaire and nep count. Irrigation treatments produced significantly lower (3% ~ 4%) protein content than rain-fed, while oil content increased significantly (6% ~ 10%).
[Conclusion] The study results indicate a potential for improving cotton fiber and seed qualities by managing irrigation and planting geometries in cotton production systems in the Mississippi (MS) Delta region. The HI-TR system appears promising for lint and seed quality.
[Title] Effects of irrigation and planting geometry on cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) fiber quality and seed composition
[Authors] PINNAMANENI Srinivasa R., ANAPALLI Saseendran S., SUI Ruixiu, BELLALOUI Nacer & REDDY Krishna N.
Journal of Cotton Research 2021, 4: 2