Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Plant and Environmental Science
With current production of Pima cotton (Gossypium barbadense L.) in the United States being limited to the West, expanding cultivation into other parts of the country requires extensive research. Pima cotton is extra-long staple cotton with superior and more valuable fibers than the more broadly cultivated species, upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). With Pima cotton production once existing in South Carolina prior to the 1930’s and boll weevil (Anthonmus grandis grandis Boh.) invasion, it was hypothesized in this study that it could be cultivated in the state once again. The objectives were (1) to identify pima genotypes in a two-year agronomic performance trial with acceptable yield and fiber quality when ginned by two different ginning methods; and (2) to evaluate pima genotypes under irrigated and dryland conditions and three planting dates in a two-year management trial. Pima genotypes were compared to upland checks in both trials and in both years of the study for yield, fiber quality, and plant physiology. In both trials, the upland checks yielded significantly higher than pima genotypes by approximately 50%; however, most pima genotypes had significantly better fiber quality. Irrigation had no significant impact on lint yield in either year of the study. Yield was significantly higher for the early date in 2019. Few entries had a significant response to ginning method for fiber length and strength. The top five pima genotypes had statistically similar net return values to the upland checks when priced at the base loan rate for pima ($0.95/lb) and upland ($0.52/lb). However, further research is required to conclude whether pima would be successful in South Carolina.
Holladay, Sarah Katherine, "Developing a High-Value Pima Cotton Production System for South Carolina" (2020). All Theses. 3448.