Farmers, commodity leaders and agricultural business professionals not too long ago gathered on the WTX Rural Summit in Lubbock, Texas. Farm Press visited with commodity leaders in regards to the present state of the cotton, corn, sorghum and peanut crops.
Cotton planting is sort of full on the Excessive Plains, however the state of the crop is diverse, mentioned Kody Bessent, Plains Cotton Growers vp of operations and legislative affairs. “It is a smorgasbord of the place we’re at, which is an efficient factor. We’re in a a lot better place throughout the Excessive Plains due to the current rainfall (6-10 inches), so individuals are within the discipline attempting to get planted as rapidly as they’ll. They’re on the lookout for locations to maneuver to as a result of some soils are moist, so they’re bouncing round.
(Photographs by Shelley E. Huguley)
“But we’re in a much better position than we were three or four weeks ago when we thought we were going to be in a dry situation.”
Final 12 months, Martin solely obtained 5 inches of rain. “And two of that came in February. So, it’s quite the change,” he mentioned.
“We’ve got some really good crops and some that never materialized from South Texas all the way up the state,” mentioned David Gibson, Texas Corn Producers government director.
Among the crop losses are attributable to dry climate. Within the Rio Grande Valley, it is as a result of producers did not obtain the water allotments attributable to Mexico holding water that ought to have come to the river, Gibson mentioned.
“They withheld water from some of the row crops to put on sugarcane and other high value crops.”
For a lot of the Coastal Bend, the 2021 crop is in good condition. However alongside the higher coast, close to Houston, it has been a unique story. “They’ve been so wet that some of their corn is stunted from wetness,” Gibson mentioned.
In Central Texas, “I’ve heard excellent reports, but they’re very wet right now, so hopefully they’ll keep enough moisture that the crop will keep maturing,” Gibson mentioned.
On the Excessive Plains, with the current moisture, Gibson mentioned the crop is in respectable form. But when we now have these 102-degree days and we get excessive winds, it is actually going to tax our irrigation techniques because of the lack of subsoil moisture.”
The sorghum business is anticipating 20% extra acres planted to sorghum this 12 months, about 7 million acres, Lust mentioned.
Manufacturing progress varies all through the state. “Early sorghum in South Texas was in trouble but they got some timely rains, so that crop is progressing quickly. We’ll harvest in about 30 days,” Lust mentioned.
Within the Rio Grande Valley and alongside the Gulf Coast, the crop was in good condition till current rains. “Tremendous rains,” Lust mentioned. “We need to dry out. Sorghum is probably in better shape than cotton but even some sorghum areas where there is excess is a challenge. Otherwise, the crop looks good.”
Central Texas is sweet form, he mentioned. “Then you get up here and it’s typical West Texas – it’s either too wet or too dry and sometimes those are 10 miles apart. But overall, acres are up up here. Kansa, our largest production state, is off to a good start, has a good moisture profile. So, the crops are going in very timely and still have a lot of sorghum to plant.”
South of Seminole, producer and Western Peanut Growers Affiliation President Otis Johnson mentioned the peanut crop is hit and miss. “From the state line into Gaines County, Texas, and into West Texas, they’ve received about 1.5 inches of rain up to 6 inches. But poor New Mexico, when you get west, they’re still as dry as a bone but the peanut crop looks really good,” Johnson mentioned.
“For me personally, the primary rain we received, I received a great hailstorm with it that worn out all of my cotton. I had about half my crop up and the peanuts took it on the chin, too, however they’ve come again and look fairly good.
“But as a whole, I think the peanuts are looking good. Most of them are in, it’s just those few hailstorms. My brother got one last week that beat the heck out of his peanuts but peanuts are resilient. They’ll come back.”
The peanut outlook is constructive this 12 months, Johnson mentioned. “The price is decent, finally, and we’re getting some rain.”
See summit picture gallery, Producers, industry, government leaders gather at WTX Rural Summit
However, sadly, that rain got here just a little late. “There were quite a few acres moved out of peanuts at the first of May when it was still so dry. So, we may be down on acres a little because of that,” Johnson mentioned.
“The demand for peanuts is huge right now, which is a positive. Exports are up, especially if we can get the EU back on board. So, I look forward to maybe a couple of good years of prices.”