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Rain, Drought Equally Troublesome for Texas Cotton

 Trisha Downing
Weather extremes have made for a strange season for Texas cotton growers.

Drought in Texas has not been good for the state’s cotton crops. Neither has all the rain. Depending on where growers are in the state, extra dry or extra wet weather has been problematic for cotton growers. That’s according to the Texas Farm Bureau, which reports that cotton harvests across the US are down about 5 percent from last season. And that despite that plantings are up more than 11 percent.

Much of the country’s lower production is being attributed to abandoned fields in Texas. The USDA’s Weekly Cotton Market Review today says that recent heavy rain in the northern Blackland Prairies has  delayed harvesting. Growers in Northeast Texas are also worried about the effects of the rain on cotton still on stalks.  

Spot cotton trading was inactive this week in the region. Supplies and producer offerings were light, as was demand. Average local spot prices, however, were higher.

Meanwhile, hay farmers in Northeast Texas are welcoming the rain. The USDA says chances for a third cutting are “looking positive” thanks to recent rains in the area. Around the state, hay traded unevenly steady this week as a variety of the crop continues to come onto the market.