What is in this article?:
- Peanut research seeks ways to improve efficiency, cut costs
- Another exciting development
- Significant increase in maturity
• Researchers are working with experimental peanut varieties that hold promise for improved yield, quality, and disease resistance, along with ways to achieve greater efficiency in irrigation, harvesting, and other production practices.
BRYAN BOYD, from left, consultant, Edwards, Miss.; and growers Rodney Mahalitc, Vicksburg, Miss.; Lonnie Fortner, Port Gibson, Miss.; and Daniel Parrish, Tchula, Miss., were among those attending the Mississippi Peanut Growers Association annual meeting.
Another exciting development
“Another that we’re particularly interested in averaged roughly 5,900 pounds, equal to 06G, but if you compare the weight of 100 seed, it’s much smaller-seeded than O6G. This will not only save money for producers on seed cost, it will also give shellers a more uniform outturn. That’s important, enabling them to sell to multiple markets instead of having a lot of jumbos to deal with.
“We expect these varieties to be released or available for seed increase soon. Several of the varieties in this research look extremely good and we’ll keep pushing forward with them. We should have them in our Mississippi tests this year.”
Another research project outlined by Lamb is aimed at improving maturity distribution in peanuts by chemically halting flowering late in the growing period.
“When you’ve got peanuts that are far black, or approaching far black on the maturity profile board, there is a point that additional flowers will develop pegs and pods, but those pods have no chance of helping with yield or grade. They’re taking energy away from the plant that could be used by the more mature, higher-yielding, higher-grading peanuts.
“Immature peanuts can also take away from grade, because they can cause problems with flavor — that was the original aim of this research, to improve flavor by reducing the immatures.
“In tests at two locations in Georgia and one at Walnut Ridge, Ark., we terminated flowering at about day 100. One of the compounds is diflufenzopyr Na, an experimental chemical from BASF that is not yet approved for use; the other is generic glyphosate.
“The glyphosate was applied at the rate of 2 oz., 4 oz., and 6 oz. per acre. Generic glyphosate is cheap at the full rate, and it is particularly cheap at these low rates.”
From day 100 through day 120, on three-foot rows, plants were producing an average of 14 new, viable flowers every day, Lamb says. The chemical treatments reduced that to 2 to 3 flowers each day. And even in the flowers that remained, the pollen wasn’t viable. In other plots, flowers were hand-removed for 20 days.