Planting Date Summary at Lewiston-Woodville

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This weekend I was pulling together dome information relative to planting dates in North Carolina. While these data included some of the older varieties (CHAMPS and Perry) the planting date response would generally hold true for newer varieties as well (Table 2.) These data remind us that peanuts are great at compensating for stress but that in any given year results will surprise us. In these trials irrigation or rainfall was generally adequate for good growth in July, August and September. However, peanut was not irrigated in May or June. Results from 2009-2011 are typical, showing higher yields when peanut are planted in early or mid-to-late May compared with June. However, early planted peanut lost flowers and pegs in 2012 due to the limited rainfall in June while peanut planted in early June were growing almost exclusively vegetative during the dry month (of June) and began growing reproductively at about the time rainfall picked up and irrigation was included. We had a good fall for peanut to keep maturing in 2012 as well. These factors led to the higher yields with the later plantings. This may not happen very often but it does remind us to not give up on late-planted peanut. I suspect that if rainfall was abundant in June and early July but dry conditions persisted in the months of July and August the reverse of 2012 would occur.

There is a more recent summary with Bailey with planting dates of early, mid and late May (Table 2). We had 4 digging dates in this trial and I picked the highest yielding of the 4 digging dates for each planting date for the comparison. Peanut in the mid and late plantings yielded more than peanut from the early plantings in 2013. Peanut from all 3 planting dates yielded the same in 2014. During 2013 early May was very cool and we had a great deal of thrips damage, so this may explain the lower yields with the early planting. Keep in mind that growing conditions were great in 2013 and 2014 for the entire season (except early May during 2013).

As always, I suggest planting peanut in mid-May if at all possible. Both data sets suggest that the most consistent yields across 6 years of testing occurred with mid-May plantings (5 of 6 years this planting equaled or exceeded the other planting dates.)

Table 1. Peanut yield (varieties CHAMPS and Perry) as influenced by the interaction of rainfall in June and planting date.
Planting date
 Year  Rainfall in June  May 4  May 22  June 5
 inches ————— lbs/acre —————
2009 5.2 5,410 ab 6,060 a 4,970 b
2010 2.3 4,480 a 4,280 a 3,960 a
2011 4.3 3,790 a 3,270 ab 2,770 b
2012 0.1 3,990 c 4,760 b 5,890 a
Data are pooled over the varieties CHAMPS and Perry. Means for each planting date were selected for the highest yield from 4 digging dates. Means within a year followed by the same letter are not significantly different at p < 0.05.
Table 2. Peanut yield (variety Bailey) as influenced by planting date under good season-long growingconditions from late May-October.
Planting date
Year May 2-4 May 16-18 May 28
————— lbs/acre —————
2013 5,040 b 6,110 a 6,210 a
2014 5,680 a 5,660 a 5,310 a
Means for each planting date were selected for the highest yield from 4 digging dates. Means within a year followed by the same letter are not significantly different at p < 0.05.

Article first appeared as North Carolina Peanut Note (PNNC-2015-027)