Big 2005 Crop Still Growing; HighPlains
Forecast Up 80,000 Bales Since December

Friday,January 13, 2005                           By Shawn Wade

      Theold saying "big crops keep getting bigger" seems to be holding true as the 2005High Plains cotton crop received yet another boost to its production estimatein the January 12 USDA Crop Production Report.

      Basedon the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) report, the High Plainsregion will produce a record breaking 5.63 million bales from the 2005 crop,eclipsing last year's 4.9 million-bale record by more than 700,000 bales.

      TheJanuary NASS estimate is 80,000 bales higher than the agency's Decemberforecast of 5.55 million bales for the region. An adjustment in the expectedyield per acre for Texas Agricultural Statistics Service Districts 1-N and 1-Sprecipitated the increase.

      Breakingdown the numbers indicates USDA believes production from the Northern HighPlains (1-N) will reach 1.45 million bales, up 30,000 bales from December, andthat the Southern High Plains (1-S) district will produce 4.1 million bales, up50,000 bales.

      Statewidethe 2005 Upland Cotton crop is forecast at 8.2 million bales. USDA productionestimates are reported in 480-pound bales.

      Thereport estimated that yields in District 1-N should average 899 pounds perharvested acre, up 18 pounds per acre from December, and that yields inDistrict 1-S are projected at 746 pounds per harvested acre, 9 pounds higherthan the previous estimate.

      Whilethe 2005 production forecast continues to climb on the High Plains, the areawasn't the only part of the state to see significant increases in the Januaryestimate. Both the Northern (2-N) and Southern (2-S) Rolling Plains TASSdistricts recorded 40,000 bales increases in the January 12 report as well.

      Inaddition to being a High Plains record-setter from a production standpoint, the2005 crop also continues to exhibit outstanding fiber quality measurements aswell.

      Seasonto date averages on the 4.15 million running bales classed by the Lubbock andLamesa USDA Cotton Classing offices show that the dry weather pattern that hasprevailed during the harvest season has helped gins run at near peak capacitythroughout the season and caused no degradation in fiber quality betweenharvest and ginning operations.

      Sincethe High Plains cotton harvest was essentially finished by January 1, all thatremains now is for area gins to finish processing the last 1.5 million or sobales that remain. Ginning is expected to continue for another 6-8 weeks insome areas.

      Staplelength is one of the most important of the physical characteristics of thecotton fiber. Staple length readings reported by the Lubbock USDA CottonClassing office, which processed approximately 3.187 million individual balesamples through January 12, is averaging a respectable 34.9.

      TheLamesa Classing office, which has processed just over 955,000 bale samples, isaveraging a Staple length of 35.1. Staple length is measured in 32nds of aninch. A Staple reading of 35 is equivalent to a fiber length of 1-3/32 inches.

      Micronairereadings at the Lubbock and Lamesa offices are both averaging 3.7. Strengthmeasurements at the two offices average right at the 29 grams per tex level.Uniformity readings at the two offices are stable at 80 percent for the season.

      Colorgrades from the two offices are averaging Strict Middling 21 or better for theseason. An average Leaf grade of 3 has also been reported by both offices.

      Whencomparing the bale totals from the Lubbock and Lamesa Cotton Classing officesto the latest NASS production estimate, it is important to remember that NASSfigures are reported on the basis of a standardized 480-pound bale size.

      USDAClassing office totals are reported on running bales, or the actual number ofbales produced. In terms of actual bale weights running bales tend to averageapproximately 500 pounds or 3-4 percent more than a statistical 480-pound baleequivalent.

      Whenconverting from running bales to statistical bales the total number of balesproduced will increase by 3-4 percent due to the conversion. To illustrate thisdifference the 4.15 million running bales classed so far at Lubbock and Lamesawould equate to approximately 4.32 million 480-pound statistical bales.

      Thefollowing table shows the district level detail from the January 2006 CropProduction report as released by TASS.

 

2005-crop Texas Upland Cotton District

Estimates, January 2006

Districts

Planted Acres

Harvested Acres

Yield

Per Acre

Production

Change

 

1,000 ac.

1,000 ac.

pounds

1,000 bales

bales

1-N *

900

790

899

1,480

30,000

1-S **

2,800

2,670

746

4,150

50,000

2-N

395

370

610

470

40,000

2-S

525

490

539

550

40,000

4

115

105

594

130

0

7

175

150

704

220

10,000

8-N

80

75

800

125

5,000

8-S

370

345

584

420

-30,000

9

245

240

580

290

-10,000

10-S

185

165

567

195

-20,000

Other districts

110

100

816

170

-15,000

STATE

5,900

5,500

716

8,200

100,000

Source: Texas Agricultural Statistics Service

*TASS District 1-N, Northern High Plains, includesthe following 23 counties: Armstrong, Briscoe, Carson, Castro, Dallam, DeafSmith, Floyd, Gray, Hale, Hansford, Hartley, Hemphill, Hutchinson, Lipscomb,Moore, Ochiltree, Oldham, Parmer, Potter, Randall, Roberts, Sherman, andSwisher.

**TASS District 1-S, Southern High Plains, includesthe following 16 counties: Andrews, Bailey, Cochran, Crosby, Dawson, Gaines,Glasscock, Hockley, Howard, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Martin, Midland, Terry, andYoakum.


High Plains Production ConferencesOffer
Education/CEU Opportunities for Producers

      Helpingfarmers stay up on the latest trends in crop production, marketing, andmanagement ideas is the number one goal of High Plains crop productionconferences.

      Sponsoredby Texas Cooperative Extension, the Conferences offer valuable production informationfor producers entering the 2006 growing season.

      Conferencesare scheduled at multiple locations throughout the area to provide growers anopportunity to receive this information without having to travel too far fromhome.

      Byattending the conferences producers can also earn continuing education units(CEUs) necessary to maintain private and commercial applicator licenses.

      Thisyear's conference dates and locations are:

 

January 17

 

Caprock Cotton Conference, 8:00 a.m.,

 

Plains Baptist Assembly, 9 miles south of Floydada on Highway 62. There is a $25.00 registration fee.

 

For more information contact Steve Davis, Crosby County EA-IPM, at 806-675-2426 or J.D. Ragland, Floyd CEA-AG, at 806-983-4912.

January 25

Muleshoe Crop Conference.

 

For more information contact Curtis Preston, Bailey CEA-AG, at 806-272-4584.

January 26

Southern Mesa Ag Conference, 8:00 a.m.,

 

Dawson County Annex Bldg., 609 North 1st Street, Lamesa. Early $20.00 registration can be mailed to Texas Cooperative Extension, P.O. Box 1268, Lamesa, TX 79331. Registration at the door is $25.00

 

For more information contact Jeff Wyatt, Dawson CEA-AG, at 806-872-7539.

February 7

South Plains Ag Conference, 8:00 a.m.,

 

Nikki Vinson Youth Center, 110 W. Hill, Brownfield.

 

For more information contact Chris Bishop, Terry CEA-AG, at 806-637-4060.

February 10

Hale/Swisher Crops Conference, 9:00 a.m.,

 

Ollie Liner Center, Plainview. A total of 5 CEU credits will be available to licensed pesticide applicators at the meeting.

 

For more information contact Michael Dollie, Hale CEA-AG, at 806-291-5267.