John Friesen Gaines County Texas

John Friesen, Gaines County, Texas.

Five-bale cotton rewards hard work, good management, variety selection

Gaines county, Texas, farmer John Friesen hit a goal in 2013 that had eluded him, and many other cotton farmers, for years—five-bale cotton. He topped that on one 120-acre field under center pivot irrigation.

“Everything had to fall into place to make that yield,” he says. The variety, NG 1511 B2RF, played a big role, he says, as did the land and water.

“This was a new field and had been in Conservation Reserve for 10 or 20 years,” he says. “And a new well produced 700 gallons of water per minute.  That’s as good as it gets in this area; it’s unusually good water.”

Friesen says that combination—a variety that was capable of producing high yields, new soil and ample water—provided the incentive to manage the field a bit more aggressively than usual. “I like the variety,” he says. “And I set a goal, or a dream, of five bales per acre.”