Monday, October 24, 2011

It's Cotton Picking Time for Growers Across the Valley

Acres and acres of cotton are ready for harvest in the Valley.
The wait is almost over.

 In a few days, we should see some Pima growers sending out harvesters to pick their cotton. These grower will have a head start over other Pima producers because they were able to plant their crop during a break between storms in March.

 I wouldn’t be surprise to find the Pima harvest wrapping up after Thanksgiving – thanks to early season cool weather.

Acala cotton harvest is in full swing.
Even with the late harvest, growers should have amble time to shred the cotton stalks and disc their fields to meet the plow-down deadline aimed at managing the crop-damaging pink bollworm in the spring. Of course, Mother Nature needs to cooperate. Last year, the deadline was extended in December because rain made the fields too muddy for farmers to get equipment into their fields.

For Acala growers, their harvest is well under way and they should continue picking their cotton for another week to 10 days.

Overall, the lint looks good. Acala growers should get good yields. Right now, cotton modules are lining up at the gins. To save costs, gins start firing up in November when lower winter electrical rates kick in. Then the ginning picks up steam.

Our annual Cotton Tour is a perfect photo opportunity.
 Cotton Tour Nears: Our annual Cotton Tour is around the corner. The free event is Tuesday, November 8 and includes lunch in downtown Firebaugh. Participants will have an opportunity to meet growers, visit a gin and even pick some cotton. One of the stops will include a visit with Windfall Farms’ growers Frank Williams and Mark Fickett. Visitors will have a chance to inspect Windfall’s cotton fields and perennial hedgerow. So spread the word. Buses will leave the Best Western Apricot Inn – Interstate 5 and West Panoche Road about 23 miles southwest of Firebaugh – at 8:30 a.m. and return about 4 p.m. Registration is required. Sign up at

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