Crop Progress: Good News for Boll Set, Crop Condition

The effects of a week of good, hot, and mostly open weather across the Cotton Belt in the past week really showed up in the Aug. 9 USDA Crop Progress report for cotton.

Squaring is now reported in 88% of the U.S. crop – up 6 percentage points in the past week – with nine states at or ahead of their respective 5-year averages for this week.


Boll set made another big jump with bolls now reported in 63% of the crop. That’s up 13 percentage points for the second consecutive week but still lagging slightly behind the 5-year average. In all, 12 cotton states recorded double-digit percentage increases in the past week, led by Kansas (up 22 points) and Oklahoma (up 20 points).

The report also noted reports of open bolls in 5% of the overall crop – still well below the 5-year average. However, three states registered impressive initial percentages of open bolls – Arizona (30%), Mississippi (22%) and Louisiana (21%).

There was also a shift to the positive side in cotton crop condition this week. The crop is now rated 65% good/excellent – up 5 percentage points – with 28% of the crop rated fair and only 7% rated poor/very poor.