2005 County Production Totals Announced As
2006 Crop Struggles To Establish Itself

Friday, June 9, 2006                                  By Shawn Wade

      They say records were made tobe broken and unofficially results of the 2005-growing season proved the truthof that statement. The only real question about the 2005 crop left unansweredwas where all that cotton was actually produced.

      The information needed toanswer that question was made official June 9 with the release of final countylevel production figures from the USDA National Agricultural StatisticsService. In a nutshell, the 2005 crop is just as impressive on paper as it wasin the field, especially in the Texas High Plains.

      Statewide, 2005 Upland Cottonproduction totaled a record-breaking 8.44 million 480-pound bales according tothe final tally reported by USDA NASS on June 9.

      Topping the 2004 productionmark was considered a long-shot going into 2005, but in the end a near perfectcombination of weather, technology and know-how allowed it to happen withrelative ease. The 41-county High Plains production area served byLubbock-based Plains Cotton Growers produced 5.626 million bales of cotton in2005. High Plains cotton accounts for 66 percent of the State's 2005 UplandCotton production total and 24 percent of a U.S. crop that totaled 23.259 million bales.

      The 2005-crop's Top Tencotton producing counties in the High Plains region (reported in 480-lb bales)were: Hale, 513,000; Lubbock, 467,000; Gaines, 461,000; Lynn, 429,000; Terry,409,000; Dawson, 400,000; Hockley, 381,300; Lamb, 312,000; Crosby, 296,000;and, Floyd, 230,000.

      The All Cotton yield perharvested acre in the region average 786 pounds across all counties. The region'stop producing county in terms of overall yield per harvested acre was ParmerCounty where growers averaged 1163 pounds per acre in 2005. Ten other countiesin the region averaged 900 pounds per acre or more for the growing season.

      Acreage-wise the High Plainsplanted 3.72 million acres of cotton in 2005 and harvested 3.43 million acres,a difference of 284,200 acres. This calculates to a low 7.6 percent abandonmenttotal for the year.

      Acreage abandonment totalscould look significantly different for the 2006 crop unless the situationfacing producers in the field changes dramatically over the next few weeks.Hot, dry temperatures, and a general absence of rainfall in predominantlydryland production areas, have put a large portion of the area's cotton acreageon the brink of disaster.

      TASS enumerators are in thefield now performing the agency's Mid-year Crop Survey. Results of the surveywill be published on June 30 and provide the first picture of actual plantedacreage for the 2006 crop by crop reporting district.

      Crop reports from around theregion show producers are dealing with a diverse and rapidly changing set ofcircumstances. Some areas report irrigated crops that could be viewed aspractically perfect. Other areas have thousands of "dusted in" dryland acres ina wait and see situation with producers hoping for a rain that seems to alwaysbe on the other side of the 7-day weather forecast.

      Regardless of the individualcircumstances, every acre of the High Plains needs a good rain sooner ratherthan later. Benefits of such a rain will range from easing irrigation usage tokeep the young crop going, to establishing dry-planted acres.

      A complete listing of the2005 Upland cotton production totals for Texas and other states is available onthe NASS website (www.usda.gov.nass/). Just click on the "Quick Stats"link to search for the data you want to find. The following table shows 2005Upland Cotton production in the 41-county Plains Cotton Growers, Inc. servicearea.

Texas High Plains

2005-crop Upland Cotton Production (All)

Source: National AgriculturalStatistics Service

 

County

Planted

Acres

Harvested

Acres

 

Yield/HA

Production

(480lb Bales)

Andrews

20,500

19,600

926

37,800

Armstrong

4,400

2,700

800

4,500

Bailey

86,100

76,400

704

112,000

Borden

28,600

28,200

611

35,900

Briscoe

35,800

26,800

736

41,100

Carson

41,900

40,000

817

68,100

Castro

74,700

68,000

1,091

154,600

Cochran

128,000

115,500

810

195,000

Crosby

219,000

201,100

707

296,000

Dallam

**

**

**

**

Dawson

293,000

291,700

658

400,000

Deaf Smith

40,500

27,300

1,007

57,300

Dickens

25,000

22,100

469

21,600

Floyd

193,500

136,900

806

230,000

Gaines

264,000

257,800

858

461,000

Garza

42,600

33,500

602

42,000

Hale

273,000

262,100

939

513,000

Hansford

4,400

4,300

1,049

9,400

Hartley

7,900

7,700

979

15,700

Hemphill

**

**

**

**

Hockley

257,000

229,100

798

381,000

Howard

113,500

111,500

533

123,700

Hutchinson

2,400

2,400

880

4,400

Lamb

200,300

163,500

916

312,000

Lipscomb

**

**

**

**

Lubbock

265,000

257,800

870

467,000

Lynn

303,000

292,900

703

429,000

Martin

148,500

147,600

582

179,000

Midland

27,900

27,500

497

28,500

Moore

26,800

26,400

1,038

57,100

Motley

24,800

24,200

464

23,400

Ochiltree

7,800

7,800

849

13,800

Oldham

**

**

**

**

Parmer

80,200

65,200

1,163

158,000

Potter

**

**

**

**

Randall

4,000

2,200

764

3,500

Roberts

1,300

1,300

849

2,300

Sherman

12,600

12,200

999

25,400

Swisher

86,000

71,000

818

121,000

Terry

250,000

246,000

798

409,000

Yoakum

127,000

126,900

730

193,000

1-N Combined Co.

1,100

700

960

1,400

41 County Total

3,722,100

3,437,900

786

5,626,100

** Zero production or Not Reportedand included in 1-N Combined Counties

 

USDA Releases Expanded Information Set

Friday, June 9, 2006                                  By Shawn Wade

      The Agriculture Departmenthas released a file that contains the names of entities and individualsinvolved in corporations, partnerships, trusts and other organizations thatreceive farm payments.

      The newly released fileoutlines many of these relationships, but omits cooperatives, such as RicelandFoods of Arkansas, the biggest handler of farm payments over the past 10 years,because cooperatives are considered agents acting on behalf the government todistribute payments to eligible individuals.

      Individual payment amountsare not kept as part of the file released by USDA. The department said adetailed accounting of payments to individuals since 2002 will be madeavailable in August. Information included in the file is public information,and has been released through Freedom of Information Act requests in lessdetailed form in the past.

 

First 2006 "FOCUS on Entomology" Newsletter Now Available on Lubbock TAMUWebsite

Friday, June 9, 2006                                  By Shawn Wade

      The 2006 planting season israpidly drawing to a close and producers are, in many areas, completely focusedon getting crops established and dealing with in-season management issues.

      This week's release of theinitial issue of the 2006 Texas Cooperative Extension "FOCUS on Entomology" newsletter means High Plainscotton producers will have the benefit of one of their most trusted informationsources, albeit on a slightly revised timetable.

      The announced retirement ofTexas Cooperative Extension Entomologist Jim Leser earlier this year put thefuture of the "FOCUS on Entomology" newsletter in limbo. Fortunately, however, "FOCUS onEntomology" willcontinue to be a part of the High Plains cotton producer's arsenal thanks toDr. Leser's willingness to continue to oversee data collection and editing ofthe publication.

      Following this week's first2006 issue of FOCUS the newsletter will be published bi-weekly through the middle ofSeptember. The newsletter is available through a variety of sources includingthe Plains Cotton Growers website (www.plainscotton.org)and directly from Texas Cooperative Extension on the Lubbock Extension Center'swebsite: http://lubbock.tamu.edu/focus/

      Since its inception FOCUS has grown from addressing mostlyinsect management issues to include a full range of cotton management topicsthat are both timely and useful for producers. In addition to cotton relatedinformation FOCUS also includes timely information on other crops that are ofinterest to High Plains producers.

      Beyond what is included in FOCUS, producers are reminded that theLubbock Extension Center's website has an extensive list of helpfulpublications that can assist growers with a variety of crop questions and atvirtually any stage of crop management.

 

Visit PCG on the Web:

WWW.PLAINSCOTTON.ORG

 

Amarillo ToHost 28th Southern Conservation
Systems Conference June 26-28

Friday,June 9, 2006                                  By Shawn Wade

      The 28th Annual SouthernConservation Systems Conference (SCSC) is scheduled in Amarillo, June 26-28,2006 at the Fifth Seasons Inn. This year's program theme is "Improvingconservation technologies to compete for global resources and markets" andwill feature a producer panel discussion of conservation systems used ondryland and irrigated farms with some integrated livestock grazing. Over 20presentations and 40 poster reports will describe research that integrateslivestock into forage, grain, and fiber cropping systems or implements sensorand tillage technology to increase the efficiency of water, ag-chemicals, andenergy use.

      On Wednesday, June 28, ahalf-day field tour will highlight local concentrated feeding operations,commercial farms using conservation tillage, and research sites for developingand quantifying efficient irrigation practices, wind energy generation andresidue management systems.

      Participants can receivecredit for continuing education units (CEUs) toward their Texas Department ofAgriculture pesticide applicator license and Texas Certified Crop Advisors.

      Conference registrationincludes lunch on Tuesday and Wednesday, refreshments during breaks, conferenceabstracts and proceedings, and the tour. Regular registration is $120 andstudent registration is $50.

      The SCSC conference isprimarily for exchanging information on conservation systems among researchers,extension and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) personnel, cropconsultants, ag-chemical companies, and farmers.

      The main objective of theSCSC is to expand the use of conservation practices in the southern UnitedStates to reduce soil erosion, environmental degradation, and resourceutilization.

To achieve this goal, much of the conservation systems researchis directed at developing technologies that increase farm yields and/orprofitability while improving the quality of soil and water resources foragricultural, domestic, and recreational uses.

      The program is beingpresented by the Southern Extension and Research Activity – InformationExchange Group 20 (SERA-IEG-20), USDA-Agricultural Research ServiceConservation and Production Research Lab., Bushland TX., USDA-NRCS and theGolden Spread Chapter - Soil and Water Conservation Society.

      For more information accessthe following website at http://www.cprl.ars.usda.gov/SCSC.htmor contact LouisBaumhardt, (806) 356-5766,