Cotton, Melon Intercropping System Getting Good Look
Thursday, May 31st, 2012
As cotton producers continue to look for ways to improve their profitability and fully utilize their resources, intercropping with vegetables might become a viable option, says a southwest Georgia county Extension agent who is working with a group of his farmers on just such a project.
This past year marked the second growing season that Brian Tankersley of Tift County, Ga., has worked with growers on intercropping systems. In 2010, they had success with growing cotton and cantaloupes together. In 2011, they repeated that system and added watermelons to the mix.
Tift County, says Tankersley, is the perfect place for such an experiment because of its crop diversity. “We grow a tremendous amount of produce, including cantaloupes and watermelons, and we also grow a significant amount of cotton, about 20,000 to 25,000 acres. Statewide in Georgia, we have 4,800 to 5,000 acres of cantaloupes planted annually and almost 24,000 acres of watermelons that are grown annually,” he says.