CROSBY COUNTY, Texas (KCBD) - The start to the 2019 cotton season has been mostly positive for South Plains producers, quite the opposite to previous years dominated by heat and dry weather.
“It’s an excellent start,” Kris Verett of Verett Farms said. “I feel very optimistic about the year. We are in a much better position now this time than I would say we were last year. It was just so dry. We had cotton coming up last year and the ground was so hot the cotton would emerge and it would burn. The soil was so hot. We’re the complete opposite. We have some humidity and some moisture in the air, which helps aid in cotton emergence and keeps the ground from drying out so quick behind the planters.”
May 10-12 in 2018 saw triple-digit temperatures. In 2019, those days recorded highs in the 40s. The cold weather and rain kept farmers out of fields and getting a start on planting.
Meanwhile, the 2019 active severe weather season has brought flooding rains and damage to some farms but the rain has made planting conditions ideal.
“Even though we have a later start, the moisture situation is just so much better,” Verett said. “Being able to plant dry land and drip fields and having more than adequate moisture to plant into currently, has been great.”
Verett hopes the humidity and moisture will continue, especially as the plants emerge, but hopes the severe weather will spare crops from any damaging hail.
“Hopefully, [rain] will continue into the summer and we can get some good July and August rain, which we will really need to make a good cotton crop,” Verett said. “I’m very optimistic about the rest of the year, so far.”