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Sherry: We are picking cotton

Southeast Texas—Hi y’all. We’re picking cotton. All four machines are running. This is a fantastic day.  The field we are currently harvesting is picking fairly poor. It’s yielding about 0.8 bales an acre, which is OK for this year. We usually like to pick high yielding cotton, but that is not the case. The drought took its toll on most of Texas’ dryland crops again this year. However, the weather has been ideal these past couple of days for picking cotton. 

As the pickers are running, Wesson is moving the cotton bales to higher ground. He has moved about 60 bales out of the field, so that we can get to them to load them on our trailer to haul them to the gin.


The storm moving our way. (Phone by Wyatt Zimmerman.)

We were able to run for two days before the rain came. It rained about 2 and a half inches. It shut us down for several days because it had previously rained about 4 inches before we started to harvest. The cotton we are picking we refer to it as stringy cotton because it has been rained on and is stringing out of the cotton boll. 

If you look closely you can tell the cotton is stringy and not tight in the cotton boll. This is due to rain and wind.

Since the rain shut us down we did some more maintenance work on the equipment. We also serviced them, so when it dries up enough for us to get back to work we can just jump right in and go. 

Well, having all four machines running did not last too long. When these machines of ours get rained on they don’t like it. The wires do not like to get wet. It’s a weird thing. After a rain, the machines tend to throw the most random codes or no codes at all. That’s when things get difficult, we have to chase the wires to find the issues. Normally, we find them but it sometimes takes days to locate the issues without a code.

It dried up enough to get back in the field. We got to pick with 2 machines for half a day. Then here comes more rain. We’re shut down, again.  

This area of Texas had been dry for 6 months. Now, we cannot catch a break to get this harvest complete. Hopefully, next week will be better. See y’all then.

Sherry Zimmerman can be reached at sherry@allaboardharvest.com.

Thank you to our 2023 All Aboard Fall Harvest sponsors: High Plains Journal, Unverferth Manufacturing Co., Inc., Pivot Bio, T-L Irrigation, ITC Holdings, Corp., Trail King, and U.S. Custom Harvesters, Inc. 

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