High Plains Hosts Southeastern
Cotton Producers for 2011 PIE Tour
Friday, August 26, 2011 By Mary Jane Buerkle
Eleven cotton producers from the southeastern United States were in Lubbock August 22 and 23 to learn about the High Plains cotton industry as part of the National Cotton Council's Southwest Producer Information Exchange Tour.
The PIE program allows cotton producers the opportunity to improve yields, fiber quality, and their overall farming operation efficiency. These producers gain new perspectives in such fundamental practices as land preparation, planting, fertilization, pest control, irrigation and harvesting and observe firsthand the unique ways in which their peers are using new and existing technology.
The tour began with a presentation hosted by Bayer CropScience during which Steve Nichols, the company's U.S. agronomic manager, welcomed the group and discussed Bayer CropScience's cotton program. Steve Verett with Plains Cotton Growers talked about how PCG and other regional producer organizations serve the industry, and gave an overview of cotton production on the High Plains.
Other Lubbock tour stops included PYCO Industries, Inc., Farmers Cooperative Compress, Lubbock Cotton Growers gin, Plains Cotton Cooperative Association, and the Mimms Farm in Acuff, where past PIE participants Jere and Brady Mimms showed their operation to the group.
Lubbock, the group traveled to Corpus Christi, where they met
with South Texas
producers and cotton industry representatives. They toured
grower fields, the
Port of Corpus Christi,
agribusinesses and the world-famous King Ranch.
Participants in the 2011 Southwest PIE tour included Jarred Aldridge, Jaclyn Ford, Garrett Jones, Kevin Shaw and Jon Stallings, all of Georgia; Matt Covington and Kirk Jones, both of Virginia; David Heath, Chris Sawyer and Brad Warren, all of North Carolina; and Luke O'Neal of South Carolina.
Bayer CropScience sponsors the PIE program through a grant to the Cotton Foundation. More than 900 producers have participated in the program since its inception 23 years ago. In July, Mid-South cotton producers traveled to California's San Joaquin Valley while Far West producers toured the Mid-South. Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas producers visited Georgia on August 7-12.
Producers with irrigated acreage who grow cotton varieties with Monsanto's Genuity¨ cotton traits, regardless of the brand of cottonseed, now have 30 more days to submit claims to Monsanto for the Trait Crop Loss program, the company announced on Thursday.
Monsanto is extending the deadline from August 31, 2011, to September 30, 2011 for growers in West Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and New Mexico. This one-time deadline extension, granted at the request of cotton growers, allows crop insurance adjusters more time to validate claim losses before the producer destroys the field.
Guidelines to qualify for Crop Loss benefits are as follows: The producer must have purchased Monsanto Trait technologies from an authorized dealer and must meet all requirements of Roundup Rewards¨; The acres claiming crop loss benefits must be destroyed for the crop loss claim to be paid and is subject to verification; Any form of harvesting of affected acres will void the right to claim a Cotton Technology Crop Loss benefit; and the extension applies only to irrigated acres due to severe drought conditions. Any other form of loss (wind, hail, flood, disease, pests, etc.) is not eligible for settlement under this submission deadline extension.
"We are pleased that Monsanto is working proactively with producers and crop insurance adjusters in these extenuating circumstances," Plains Cotton Growers Executive Vice President Steve Verett said.
This change will have no impact or change in the deadlines and requirements for Drought Relief program submissions on dryland cotton acres.
PUMA Golf and Cotton Incorporated have partnered to create a series of PUMA Golf performance shirts featuring TransDRYª technology, a moisture management system that wicks away moisture and spreads it for faster drying and less cling to the body.
"We are excited to be partnering with PUMA Golf, bringing new technology and styles to the course," David Earley, Senior Director, Supply Chain Marketing for Cotton Incorporated said. "At Cotton Incorporated, we believe that the PUMA Golf mantra of Look Better. Feel Better. Play Better, is a way of life. By fusing the comfort of cotton, the TransDRYTM technology and the style of PUMA Golf together, we have created top performance products that are highly desirable."
The TransDRYª moisture management system turns cotton into a performance fabric while maintaining the original breathability and comfort of cotton. By applying the technology at the yarn stage, PUMA Golf TransDRYª styles reduce cotton absorbency capacity and overall drying time by 50% and doesn't wash away like a topical treatment.
The new treatment wicks moisture from the inside of the shirt to the outside, benefiting the golfer by keeping the inside of the garment dry and less saturated; simultaneously, the treatment spreads the moisture horizontally, allowing for a faster drying time.
PUMA Golf and Cotton Incorporated have created game changing styles, allowing avid golfers the comfort of cotton as an alternative to synthetic fibers. Styles like the Golf TransDRYª Pique Polo, Golf TransDRYª Argyle Polo and Golf TransDRYªGraphic Polo have performance based technology, with the comfort of cotton and the colorful PUMA Golf style.
For more information on the TransDRYª technology, visit www.puma.com/golf.
A water conservation project in the Texas Panhandle received a federal grant totaling almost $500,000 from the United States Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS) to demonstrate strategic irrigation and crop system management within the region.
The project, known as the Texas High Plains Initiative for Strategic and Innovative Irrigation Management and Conservation, will receive a $499,848 Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) for demonstration projects designed to show agricultural producers best practices to save irrigation water and extend the viability of their farming operations.
The initiative is a collaborative effort between the USDA-NRCS, USDA-Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS), High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1, North Plains Groundwater Conservation District, Texas AgriLife Research and Extension, the Texas Alliance for Water Conservation (TAWC) and Texas Tech University.
Funding of the initiative will be split during the next three years between two on-going agricultural water conservation efficiency projects within the Panhandle-South Plains region.
The TAWC demonstration project in Floyd and Hale Counties uses on-farm demonstration sites, including cropping and livestock systems, to identify production practices, technologies, and systems that will help improve water use efficiency while maintaining individual farm profitability.
The eight-year project was created by Senate Bill 1053 by Sen. Robert Duncan of Lubbock and receives grant funding from the Texas Water Development Board in Austin.
The "200-12 Reduced Irrigation On Corn" demonstration project is a five-year initiative providing field-scale profitability/feasibility demonstrations of producing 200 bushels of corn utilizing 12 inches of irrigation water, combined with seasonal rainfall and available water within the crop's root zone soil profile.
The project is sponsored by the North Plains Groundwater Conservation District.
"High Plains Underground Water Conservation District is pleased to be a partner in this new initiative. Projects, such as this, have been a mainstay of the district during its 60-year history. It is important to continue research to develop best management practices to allow growers to use less water, maintain crop yields, and continue the economic viability of the Texas High Plains region," said Board President Robert Meyer of Canyon.
Through the CIG grant, the USDA-NRCS is investing nearly $22.5 million in innovative conservation technologies and approaches that address a broad array of existing and emerging natural resource issues, said USDA-NRCS State Conservationist Salvador Salinas.
More than $1.2 million of that has been awarded to conservation efforts in Texas.
Created in 1951 by local residents and the State Legislature, the High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1 is charged with the responsibility of conserving, preserving, protecting, and preventing waste of groundwater within its 16- county service area.