Virginia Cotton: Excellent Planting Conditions But Moisture Running Short

Cotton planting. ©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

Cotton Planting Condtions for Franklin, Virginia
Last Updated May 9 at 11:08 a.m.

We have excellent planting temperatures for the forseeable future. No rain is expected for the next 4 to 5 days.

It is dry along Pinoppolis/Cary’s Bridge Road and that extends into Surry.

Cotton is emerging in 4 days. Planting on Friday and Saturday will result in cracking ground in 3 days if you have moisture. That could be a record.

We have about a 50% chance of getting between 0 and a half-inch of rain early next week. The U.S. cotton region is getting just plain dry.

Dealing With Dry Conditions

If you do not currently have enough moisture, then you have three options:

  1. Plant deeper – with no packing rain, Cotton will push out from an 1 to 1.25 inches.  Sandier soil and hill drop helps.
  2. Stop and wait for rain. That’s a good option if you’re past the halfway point with planting and only have early maturing varieties left to plant.
  3. Keep planting but keep seed shallow so they can be brought up by rain. I would still keep them around 0.75 of an inch deep on sandy soil or 0.5 of an inch on soil that packs.
 Date Day High Low Rain Planting
5/9 Wednesday 74 54 0 Excellent
5/10-11 Thurs & Friday 85 60 20% Excellent
5/12-13 Weekend 90 66 0 HOT
5/14-16 Early Next Week mid 80s mid 60s 40% 0 to 0.3″ Excellent
5/17-21 End Next Week 80’s 60’s 40% to 60% Excellent

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