Texas: RGV Cotton and Grain Pre-Plant Conference Jan. 14 in Mercedes

    The 21st annual Rio Grande Valley Cotton and Grain Pre-Plant Conference will be held Jan. 14 at the Events Center of the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Showgrounds, 898 N. Texas Ave., Mercedes.

    “We will have an outstanding group of expert speakers to to address timely topics specific to cotton and grain production,” said Brad Cowan, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service agent in Hidalgo County.

    Despite ongoing event preparations, Cowan asked growers to mark their calendars and save the date. The precise program agenda will be finalized before Jan. 1, he said.

    “We’ll also be holding the annual business meeting of the Cotton and Grain Producers of the Rio Grande Valley, which will be held at noon,” he said. “We’re hoping growers come out to support their growers association. And of course, Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units will be offered. Those specifics will also be announced soon.”

    For many South Texas producers, 2014 saw them produce “their best-ever cotton crop,” Cowan said.

    “As the 2015 planting season approaches, it’s time to refocus and try to combat weak market prices with strong cotton yields and excellent fiber quality,” he said.

    And grain sorghum growers, he said, are doing everything they can to combat the relatively new sugarcane aphid, an invasive insect pest that left unchecked can seriously impair yields.

    “From taking a fresh look at variety selection to keeping up with the latest in crop protection products, growers know that decisions they make prior to planting will be important to a successful growing season. That’s why this pre-plant conference is so important for growers. With the shifting dynamics of the agricultural industry, they have the opportunity of a one-stop shop to learn the latest research-based information from the experts.”

    For more information, contact Cowan at 956-383-1026 or email

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