Salcido predicts Arizona cotton acreage could increase 20 percent to 30 percent in 2011 based on his conversations with growers. A respected Arizona leader attending the Deltapine field day predicted 20 percent more cotton acres next year.

Third-generation farmer Donny England planted 2,400 acres of cotton this year; about 50 percent each in Deltapine and BCS’ Stoneville varieties.

“I plant Deltapine on tighter, sandier ground where we have trouble getting enough plant size,” England said. “Our backbone variety is DP 164 B2RF which is grown in tougher ground. It gets a good stock to support a really good load. The variety is a little more forgiving when water availability is an issue.”

England is now considering Class of 09 and 10 varieties, plus some experimental varieties. On $1 cotton prices, England noted, “It’s a scary situation; it’s almost too good to be true.”

Adam Hatley and his father Sonny, cotton growers, Associated Farms, Scottsdale, Ariz., planted the majority of their 2,300 acre cotton crop this year in Deltapine 164 B2RF, Stoneville 4498 B2RF and Phytogen 375 WRF.

“The Phytogen 375 has been the most consistent variety,” Adam Hatley said. “It got off to a good start and has carried that energy throughout the season.”

Dwayne Alford, manager, Yuco Gin, Yuma, said Yuma area cotton yields were averaging about 3-plus bales/acre. Cotton quality is excellent with low aflatoxin levels in the seed.

cblake@farmpress.com