Cot­ton pick­ing sea­son draws to a close

Chinchilla News - - NEWS -

HOPELAND farmer Greg Ben­der will re­mem­ber 2016 as the year he har­vested his high­est-yield­ing crop of cot­ton yet.

His first crop av­er­aged around 5.6 bales to an acre, which he puts down to his grow­ing ro­ta­tion with faba beans as a legume — and a bit of luck with the weather.

The sec­ond crop, pic­tured above, is look­ing to come out closer to the re­gion’s av­er­age, around 4.5 bales an acre.

By this morn­ing, all 600 acres will be har­vested and baled. Cot­ton agronomist Neal Steven­son said there were only a hand­ful of grow­ers left who were yet to pick their crops.

Speak­ing about the cot­ton sea­son around the district, Mr Steven­son said yields had been about on par with past sea­sons.

“We’re look­ing at about 4.5 bales to an acre or 11.5 bales to the hectare. There are some guys who have done a lit­tle bit bet­ter than that,” he said.

“Early gin­ning re­sults – most of it is good qual­ity or at base grade.

Look­ing to the fu­ture, Mr Steven­son said that un­less there was a good rain­fall event this win­ter, farm­ers with­out ac­cess to Sun­wa­ter or Ori­gin ir­ri­ga­tion schemes were head­ing for a very dry sea­son.

PHOTO: MATTHEW NEW­TON

PICK­ING SEA­SON: Hopeland farmer Greg Ben­der in his cot­ton crop, which he be­gan har­vest­ing this week.

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