A fast-spreading weed is causing problems in Texas cotton fields and could cost growers much of their harvest if left unchecked.
State officials said that cotton plantings this year may drop by as much as 25 percent. A survey revealed that Texas farmers intend to plant about 4.9 million acres this year.
As West Texas cotton producers await planting next month, they’re hoping for a weather forecast that calls for above-normal rainfall.
A federal effort to eradicate cotton’s long-time enemy the boll weevil has had success, and the pest is now confined to the southernmost part of Texas along the border with Mexico.
The lack of rain and the extreme heat is hitting North Texas farmers hard. One Ellis County farmer is starting to feel the effects of a harsh summer, despite crop insurance.
More American farmers are expected to plant cotton this year as prices remain high.