Cotton Farmers Rush to Finish Harvest Before Rain

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Area cotton growers have been scrambling for more than a week after forecasts showed the possibility of severe weather later this week.

The chance of rain, wind and even hail has farmers worried.

“The best case scenario would be for it not to rain at all.” Said Executive Vice President of Plains Cottons Growers, Steve Verett.”If we’re going to get rain, certainly the least amount of rain possible. The second thing that’s very important is that there’s not much wind associated with this storm.”

Verett said that while rain is normally a good resource in this region, precipitation during the harvest can have severe negative effects.

“The big concern, the long term concern for the farmer is what is it going to do to both the quantity…and the quality of the crop.” He said. “The higher the quality, the higher the value…Cotton prices are not great to begin with so it’s critical we try to maintain as high a quality as possible.”

The only good news, is that farmers have known about this possibility for multiple days. Verett said that allowed them to prepare appropriately.

“When you’re working in an outside environment that’s subject to the whims of mother nature, there’s only so much you can do.” He said. “That’s why farmers have to take advantage of every opportunity that they’re given and be ready for those good and bad weather events to take advantage of them. Either be ahead of a bad weather event or be ready for a good weather event.”

For more on this story, watch the associated video.

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