“I wish I was in the land of cotton…”
The words of the age old song, “Dixieland” might come to mind as you ride through DeKalb County and see the numerous fields of Cotton that have re-appeared this year after almost a 30-year absence of the crop. When asked about the decision to return to planting cotton, local farmer, Michael Love explained, “After the terribly dry summer we had last year we decided to plant cotton again due to its ability to withstand a hot dry climate. We’re the only ones locally that have started back, but you never know about next year. We stopped growing cotton in 1988 because at that time it wasn’t roundup ready and no matter how much you sprayed it the boll weevils would just eat the cotton up. You couldn’t make a living at it then. But cotton has been improved over the years and it’s much easier to maintain now than it used to be.”
Love Farms planted a total of 735 acres of cotton this year with fields spread throughout the county. “We ended up losing about 80 acres due to a rainy season during planting time, which delayed it enough that the bolls didn’t have time to open before the recent frost, but overall we’ve had a good yield,” Love added.
Love Farms is a diversified organization. In 2017, in addition to their cotton crop, the Love family also planted approximately 1,000 acres of corn, 1,000 acres of soybeans, and they are cattle farmers. “The more crops you have the better your chances are of making a living,” Michael explained.