Grain sorghum harvest halfway completed across South Plains

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Updated: 11/05/2013 12:32 pm
For around half of Lubbock County's grain sorghum producers they are just waiting. 

Waiting for the weather to cooperate, waiting for their grain to dry out and waiting to get the opportunity of firing up the combine and going to work in the field. 

Chris Cogburn, the Strategic Business Director at National Sorghum Producers here in Lubbock, said the crop that we are waiting to harvest was planted behind failed cotton. 

"We're probably around 50 percent harvested out," Cogburn said. "Some of the stuff that's already been cut is probably what was planted intentionally earlier before we had the big hail out on the cotton. And so that intentional sorghum reached maturity first so it's already cut out. You've got quite a bit now that is the stuff that was planted after the failed cotton." 

Getting the crop harvested is step number one, then next is loading up the grain and taking it to the grain elevator to unload. 

And Cogburn told us the reports from the grain elevators on the grain sorghum coming out of the field has been so far so good. 

"Quality seems to be good," Cogburn said. "We haven't heard anything bad or low test weights. I mean you come across a field every now and then, that's kind of normal. You don't know what happened in that particular situation. But overall test weights seem to be really good."

There is a good amount of grain sorhum still standing in the fields and for those producers to have a chance to get out and harvest the weather will need to cooperate in the next few weeks. 

"A freeze is what we need," Cogburn said. "If we could get a really hard freeze to kill the plant completely, and that stuff dry down it wouldn't take them long to get threw with their harvest. And as far as weather, you know we need to avoid any kind of big snow storm, which they're not calling for any time soon, or any kind of big rain storm, I think we'll be fine." 

Once the grain is ready the combines will get rolling and Cogburn hopes that this year begins a trend on the South Plains of having a good amount of grain sorghum acres each season. 

The recently re-opened Diamond Ethanol Plant west of Lubbock is still accepting all of the local grain sorghum they can get further driving incentive for area farmers. 
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