All posts by Tyson Raper, Cotton & Small Grains Specialist

Cotton Producers’ Prevented Planting Decision

Christopher N. Boyer, Tyson B. Raper, and S. Aaron Smith

May 20th (Final Planting date) has come and gone and June 4th (End of Late Planting) is around the corner for cotton producers. If you haven’t planted yet and have Revenue Protection or Yield Protection insurance policies, there are four options:

  1. Plant cotton in the late planting period. This option comes with reduced insurance; the farmer’s production guarantee would decrease 1% per day, for each day of delay after the final planting date until the crop is planted or the end of the late planting period. Production guarantee is the guaranteed revenue amount offered by a crop insurance provider and is calculated by multiplying guaranteed insurance price by actual production history (APH) yield, which is a 4 to 10-year trend adjusted average yield used for future crop insurance purchases, by insurance coverage level.
  2. Take the full prevented planting payment. The full prevented planting payment is the farmer’s production guarantee multiplied by the prevented planting coverage factor. The prevented planting coverage factor for cotton is 50%. This option requires leaving the land fallow or planting a summer cover crop after the late planting period that cannot be harvested or grazed before November 1st. This option does not impact the producer’s APH.
  3. Receive a 35% of their full prevented planting payment for cotton and switch to a second crop. If a partial indemnity payment was received for the first crop, the second crop will be uninsured, and a farmer must wait until after the late planting period for the first crop to plant the second crop.
  4. Forgo the prevented planting payment for cotton and plant a second crop. If a farmer did not receive an indemnity payment for the first crop, they can switch their insurance to a second crop and plant immediately.

In this report, we examine each of these alternatives by assessing the profit-maximizing option using historical crop yield data, and also lay out information producers should consider if they are faced with a prevented planting decision.  Continue reading

Cotton yield potential and planting date

With the majority of our cotton acreage yet to be planted, many have asked how late should I plant?  To answer that question, you must estimate current lint yield potential.  Dr. Shawn Butler, who recently finished his PhD in the UT Cotton Agronomy Program, compiled data from 10 field trials in Tennessee, Mississippi and Missouri to assist those interested in estimating lint yield potential based on planting date and plant population (not seeding rate, but actual plants emerged per acre). The figure above was generated with that data.

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Reports of freeze/frost damage to wheat becoming more common

Reports of blanks in wheat heads began trickling in last week and by this week became common.  The impacted areas appear to run northeast from Hardeman/Fayette Counties through Madison county and into Henry County.  The injury I’ve observed has ranged from light to severe, with the worst injury appearing on acres that were planted in early October.  From the windshield, the injury will likely not be noticeable; at a distance, the wheat may simply appear to be maturing rapidly (see image above).  Estimated yield loss from the picture above equaled 40%.  Continue reading

Wheat cold tolerance info after the 4/15 frost/freeze

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Instead of checking the thermometer last Wednesday morning (4/15) to find temperatures at or around 32 degrees, many found temperatures as low as 28 degrees.  By now (over seven days after the lowest nighttime temperature observed 4/15), we can inspect the wheat crop and get a decent estimate of what (if any) damage occurred.  Before we get into damage assessments, though, I think it is appropriate to take a look at how cold it got in order to get an idea of the expected level of damage.

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Wheat update, April 13th

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Last week was beautiful. As we were all in the midst of figuring out life during  unprecedented times, nature appeared to thumb her nose at the COVID-19 pandemic; dogwoods in full bloom, crappie moving into shallow water, tree shaking gobbles echoing through t-shirt temperature mornings. But after almost a week of beautiful weather in West Tennessee, Easter brought a cold and unfortunately hazardous front through the area that will likely stay with us through the week. As I write this on Monday, the forecast for nighttime temperatures sits in the mid to lower 30s for the next several days. These temperatures likely summon difficult memories of the Easter Freeze of 2007. With that in mind, I wanted to pass along a little information that will hopefully put you at ease. Continue reading

Wheat questions on the first of April

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**Posted on behalf of Lindsay Stephenson, Haywood County Extension Agent**

As the warmer spring days approach, and hopefully some drier days ahead, planning your next steps on your wheat crop is probably on your to-do list.  I spent some time earlier this week reaching out to Extension Agents and Specialists to get their opinions on some commonly asked questions.  Below are answers to those questions to help you in your decisions about your wheat.

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Correlation between Stock Markets and Cotton Futures

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*Posted on behalf of Dr. Aaron Smith.  A pdf of this article can be accessed by clicking the title below*

Correlation between Stock Markets and Cotton Futures

By Dr. Aaron Smith, Associate Professor and Charles Martinez, Assistant Professor

Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Tennessee

Since mid-February, cotton and stock markets have plummeted due to the spread of the COVID-19 virus. The COVID-19 pandemic has reverberated through all sectors of the US and global economies. Probably the most effected of the agricultural commodities is cotton. Cotton is tied closely to global economic activity as, in general, clothing and other apparel purchases are not a necessity and can be delayed, unlike food. For this reason, there is a close correlation between stock markets, such as the S&P 500, and cotton futures (Figure 1). Continue reading

2019 TN Cotton Variety Trial Results now available

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The 2019 TN Cotton Variety Trial Results Publication (PB1742) is now available online. This document contains detailed results from all harvested trails in the 2019 University of Tennessee Cotton Variety Testing Program.  This expanded publication follows the recently published summary publication, the 2020 TN Cotton Variety Guide (W285) which was released a few weeks ago.