It's a Wonderful Life 11-21-16 The Virginia cotton season is about wrapped up and because we are entering the holiday season, I’ll just say it’s like a Charlie Brown Christmas. Without getting to philosophical (that could come later) this year is going to create questions as to why a state yield that looked like a solid two bale crop turned into what seems to be headed to something under 700 pounds. 90,000 bales is about going to take it, +/-. We only have a handful of producers that will average into the 900’s and just as many will be under 500 pounds across their entire crop. Discussions with our local entomologists, agronomists, and pathologists result in a consensus that it was all about weather this year, and perhaps it always is. Nevertheless, this year was particularly disappointing as so many of us did everything we were supposed to do and while it didn’t look like a home run, it did look like an RBI. The worst cotton seems to have been affected to some degree by three weather events. The first was the first 3 weeks of May gave us no heat units resulting in some slow root development early. August had a very scattered rain pattern and the worst cotton went 3 to 4 weeks with no rainfall. And finally, tropical weather from the middle of September through the first week of October ruined our best cotton with hardlock. I have seen fields that averaged 600 pounds that easily had 400 to 500 pounds on the ground that was good cotton and just got too hardlocked for the picker to get it. I still marvel at the fact we had a two bale crop after two extremely stressful events during the growing season. Unfortunately the third strike came in the bottom of the ninth with two outs and the winning run on third. The best news out of the whole deal is that we are going to win a lot of games in the future because we have a lot going for us. The good thing will happen.
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