Lots of Little Things Contribute to a Record Cotton Crop
What’s the most important piece of equipment on Lynn Gullett’s Texas farming operation?
“The little GPS-powered robot that cleans the carpets in my house,” he jokingly responds. “That’s the greatest thing in the world.”
On a more serious note, he said he also depends on FieldNET®- technology that gives him and his farm manager the ability to remotely monitor and control the operation’s entire irrigation system.
“We have a total of six pivots. We’ve had them all on FieldNET for the past two growing seasons,” he said. “With it we’re able to control the pivot speed from our phones, and that’s really important for our crops.”
After being out of cotton for more than a decade, Gullett started rotating it with his corn crop two years ago. This year, he harvested a career best – five-plus to near-five-bale cotton on multiple farms.
“Everything just fell into place for me this year,” he said. “I could tell 3 to 4 weeks after it came up that it was going to be a good crop. There are a lot of great farmers in this area, but compared to others, mine looked beautiful and was really taking off.”
Gullett credits lots of little things for this year’s success – good tillage, increasing the plant population, not applying pre-emergent herbicides and using basic variable rate irrigation (VRI).
“My fields range from sand to black clay, so they require different amounts of water. They’re also half corn and half cotton,” he said. “With the basic VRI that comes with FieldNET, we can slow the pivot down when it’s going into the corn and speed it back up when it’s coming back out onto the cotton.”
Gullet considered retirement a few years ago, but said his passion for farming keeps him going year after year – and the possibility of another record crop is already on his mind.
“I don’t know if I can do it again, but I’m sure going to try,” he said.