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Texas Cotton Drops in Condition After Hail, Extreme Heat Damages Crop

Cotton conditions in Texas have declined slightly over the last few weeks after severe storms brought hail and extreme temperatures have damaged some crops, though expectations for this year’s production are still improved from last year.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s most recent World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, published July 12, forecast 11.09 million planted acres for the nation. Experts with Plains Cotton Growers believe that number is exaggerated, though they stress that no one is fully certain about what to expect for this year’s cotton crop.

Earlier this month, John Robinson, a Texas AgriLife Extension cotton economist in Bryan-College Station, said the 2023 cotton season is the most uncertain he has ever analyzed, and while echoing a similar statement, Shawn Wade, Director of Policy Analysis and Researchers for Plains Cotton Growers, said he’s hopeful for a more prosperous year than last but also recognizes there are far fewer plants going into the season than last year.

Two months ago, in the May 28 survey of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistic Services, 79% of Texas’ cotton crop was in fair or better condition, while one month ago, in the June 25 survey, that number dropped to 70% while the region still received consistent rain. In the most recent survey on the dashboard, published July 23, about 60% of the state’s crop was in fair or better condition: 3% excellent, 21% good, 36% fair, 26% poor and 14% very poor.

For the last six weeks, triple-digit temperatures have lingered over the region, bringing all-time record high temperatures to some places, including San Angelo, which set an all-time high of 114 degrees in late June.

Source : LubbockAvalancheJournal