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SPECIALISTS SPEAKING: Harvest Finishes On Positive Note

12-13CFcvrMISSOURI
Mike Milam
milammr@missouri.edu

HARVEST CONTINUES IN BOOTHEEL

According to the Missouri Crop Progress and Condition Report for the week ending, Nov. 10, cotton harvested was 64 percent complete, 18 days behind last year and 17 days behind normal. There was a lot of variability among fields and within fields. Many producers only need a week or less to get their cotton out, but with the rains that are scattered during harvest, it might take two to three weeks to finish.

As I write this report in mid-November, we were experiencing rain, and we should have four to five days of harvest before our next forecast of rain. While most fields have picked clean, I have seen a few where bolls were not fully opened, and there was a lot of cotton left in the field. After our first freeze, I noticed a few late fields had a lot of dark leaves on the plant. I suspect that some of these fields were killed by the freeze. This could have an adverse impact on fiber quality and trash content.

As I have mentioned before, the July and August rains helped some fields and damaged others. When water stands for a prolonged period of time, there is usually square and boll loss. On the other hand, non-irrigated fields were helped for the most part. There will be a lot of excellent yields this year, some poor ones and a lot in between.