Cotton Diseases

  • Viruses and pests affect the yield of Bt cotton varieties. Cotton leaf curl virus, which is a plant pathogenic virus of the family Geminiviridae, stunts plant growth seriously affecting yield. Pests like White Fly, Mealy Bugs, Aphids, Pink Boll Worm infect the plants reducing yield.[10]

  • Farmers have widely adopted Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton since its first trial in Sindh province in 2002. It is now used in 95% of the area.[10] The Punjab Seed Council has approved the use of 18 Bt cotton and non-Bt varieties for cultivation. These are: 12 BT varieties FH-114, CIM-598, SITARA-009, A-one, BH-167, MIAD-852, CIM-573, SLH-317, TARZAN-1, NS-141, IR-NIBGE-3, MNH-886, and six non-BT varieties NIBGE −115, FH-941, FH-942, IR-1524, Ali Akbar-802 and NEELAM-121.[11] In Sindh province, local Sindh varieties of cotton are also grown in about 40% of the area.[12] They are generally planted from April to July, and harvested during August–December.[3]