A new report from Robert Bowling (TAMU) revealed that sugarcane aphids (SCA) are building in southern Texas volunteer sorghum and may soon start to move into Central Texas. What this means for Kansas and Oklahoma sorghum is still unknown at this point, but it is worth noting the aphid got a much slower start last year. In preparing for possible SCA aphid infestations, there are a few important things farmers should consider prior to planting sorghum this season:
- Plant as early as possible to give plants a head start on the aphids, which tend to arrive later in the growing season.
- Currently, the insecticide Sivanto (Bayer) is the only chemical labeled for Kansas sorghum for managing sugarcane aphid infestations. Last season in 2015, Kansas had a Section 18 approval for the insecticide Transform (Dow), and although a 2016 Section 18 has been requested, this has yet to be approved for Oklahoma or Kansas.
- Efforts are underway to screen hybrids for resistance to SCA, but few are being sold as resistant so far. However, data collected so far suggests that a number of varieties rated as resistant to greenbugs also express resistance to SCA – but not all of them.
- Farmers can expect SCA to arrive in Kansas as early as July, depending on weather conditions and wind direction. Be sure to monitor the spread of the aphids northward migration via updates from this blog, county agent updates, and twitter.
Read Dr. Bowlings full article here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B4lb0hWyS3iMaGV5dVVIcUd1YUE/view?usp=sharing
-Sarah Zukoff and JP Michaud