Although cotton growers in California, Arizona and South Texas got off to an early start in 2014, planters are now rolling in most other cotton-producing states.
Based on the April 28 USDA Crop Progress Report, 13 percent of the nation’s cotton crop has been planted – exactly the same percentage in the ground one year ago. The five-year planting average for late April is 18 percent.
California leads by a wide margin, as nearly perfect conditions have allowed growers to plant 95 percent of the state’s crop to date. Arizona growers report 65 percent of cotton planting complete. Both states are running well ahead of their five-year average.
Fifteen percent of the Texas crop has been planted – only three percent behind the five-year average.
All other cotton-producing states report small planting percentages to date, primarily due to delays from cooler temperatures and wet weather patterns that extended corn planting in many areas. Growers in Louisiana and Alabama made double digit jumps in cotton planting in the past week – from three to 12 percent in Alabama and one to 17 percent in Louisiana – but severe weather in the Deep South will likely slow field work during the coming week.