Winter Weather Delays High Plains Harvest

Friday, November 29, 2013                 By Mary Jane Buerkle

      Several rounds of freezing rain, sleet, and snow fell across the High Plains this past week, creating delays for cotton producers still working to get the remainder of their crop off of the stalk.

      Some areas received up to a foot of snow, causing producers to stay out of the field for more than a week. Thankfully, wind did not accompany the wintry precipitation, as that certainly could have had a significant impact on open bolls.

      At this point, about 70 to 80 percent of the High Plains crop has been harvested, and activity is expected to resume in full force over the next week to 10 days.

      In terms of quality, little effect on color is expected from the late-season precipitation. Predominate color in both the Lubbock and Lamesa classing offices this week was 21. Average micronaire continues to hover around 3.6 in the Lubbock office and just under 4.0 in Lamesa.

      Cotton futures took a hit on Wednesday as headlines scrolled with China's plan to start selling its reserves later in the week. China's reserves account for about half of the world's stock.


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AgriLife Extension's High Plains Ag Conference

Set for December 13 in Lubbock

Wednesday, November 20, 2013         From AgriLife TODAY

      The High Plains Ag Conference conducted by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service is set for 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Dec. 13 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center, 1102 E. Farm-to-Market 1294, Lubbock.

      "This program will contain a little of just about every topic regional crop producers have indicated they're interested in on the Southern Rolling Plains," said Robert Scott, AgriLife Extension agent in Lubbock County.

      Individual preregistration, which includes lunch, is $35 by Dec. 10 and $45 at the door with no lunch guarantee, Scott said. For more information contact Scott at 806-775-1680 or

      Five Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units, three general, one laws and regulations, and one integrated pest management, will be available for those with a valid private applicators license.

      Topics and presenters, all headquartered at Lubbock, will include:

      – Cotton Varieties, Dr. Mark Kelley, AgriLife Extension agronomist.

      – A Look at Alternative Crops, Guar and Sesame, Dr. Calvin Trostle, AgriLife Extension agronomist.

      – Pigweed Weed Resistance, Dr. Peter Dotray, AgriLife Extension weed specialist.

      – 2014 AgriLife Extension Program Updates, Scott and Mark Brown, AgriLife Extension county agents.

      – Pesticide Laws and Regulations, Steve Boston, Texas Department of Agriculture.

      – Chemigation, Irrigation Efficiency and Update on the High Plains Water District regulations, Dr. Dana Porter, AgriLife Extension agricultural engineering specialist.

      – Growing Crops Using Aquaponic Technology, Dr. Russ Wallace, AgriLife Extension vegetable specialist.


Texas Commodity Symposium Scheduled for

December 4 in Amarillo

      Texas State Photographer Wyman Meinzer will be the luncheon speaker at the Texas Commodity Symposium, which will be held Wednesday, December 4, in Amarillo in conjunction with the Amarillo Farm and Ranch Show in the Grand Plaza Room at the Amarillo Civic Center. The free event will begin at 9:30 a.m.

      Meinzer will present the symposium's keynote address during the Ag Appreciation Luncheon, presented by the symposium and the Amarillo Chamber of Commerce Ag Council. Meinzer's photography is renowned, and in his more than 33 years as a photographer he has photographed and/or written 24 large format books and his work has been featured on the cover of more than 250 magazines.

     The symposium will examine a variety of issues that impact producers and the agribusiness sector. Featured topics this year include the farm bill and agricultural policy, estate planning, and program updates from the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Farm Service Agency. Bob Maurer with Manduca Trading in Chicago will provide a market and weather outlook, and Dr. Joe Outlaw with Texas A&M will give a farm policy update.

     The Water Conservation Advisory Council also will recognize its 2013 Blue Legacy Award in Agriculture recipients at the event.

      The symposium, hosted by the Corn Producers Association of Texas, Plains Cotton Growers, Inc., Texas Grain Sorghum Association, Texas Peanut Producers Board and Texas Wheat Producers Association, is made free of charge for attendees because of generous sponsorship support, including ARMtech Insurance Services, Bayer CropScience, DuPont Pioneer, High Plains Journal, Monsanto, and National Peanut Board.