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2013 Peanut Crop Perseveres

2013 Peanut Crop Perseveres

peanuts22013 was a struggle for most crops, either with planting or harvest due to excessive rains. The one crop that, on paper should have fared the worst was peanuts, but Scott Monfort, Peanut Specialist with Clemson University Extension based at Edisto REC says the crop rebounded nicely:

“In 2012 we had about 109,000 acres. We dropped back to 79,000 acres in 2013. We had pretty horrible weather the entire season. In some places we had 45” of rain between June 1st and August. We thought that would be very detrimental to our crop but we turned out to be lucky and only lost a few hundred pounds. Most people had an average to just above average yield. The good thing is our, grades are better than the past 5 years. So where we lost on yield we were able to make up on some premiums on grade.”
The crazy weather yielded some bonuses when it came to fighting disease in the peanut crop this year says Monfort:

“The best thing to do this year was to stay ahead. It was the hardest thing for growers to do this year, to get ahead and stay ahead. We had cooler and wetter conditions than normal and luckily white mold and stem rot was not an issue this year. The major disease problem was leaf spot and most everyone was growing a variety that was resistant and that helped out. We were in a lot of new ground and that has helped with disease management.”
2013 peanut acres were significantly down in the Palmetto state from 2012, but despite two good production years in a row, and a large carry-out, Monfort isn’t expecting much change in acreage for 2014:

“I think we will be in the high 70s or low 80s. Unless contracts tell me otherwise I think we will be where we are at.”
Monfort explains he’s working on plans for the 2014 plot trials:

“There are certain things that we always have each year, like variety evaluation. We tend run as many of the new chemistry trials as we can to keep up with those based on our recommendations. We have some special things with precision ag but for the main part we will be doing variety and disease testing.”
Clemson University Extension Peanut Specialist Scott Monfort.'

A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.