What Is the Cotton Growth Cycle?

If you’re in the business of growing cotton, one important thing to know about is the growth cycle of this successful commercial crop. There are a number of different varieties of cotton throughout the world, but not all are used for economic purposes. In the U.S., there are currently 14 states that are considered major cotton producers, mostly in the South and Southwest. Collectively, these are known as the Cotton Belt.

When it comes time to harvest cotton, you need a source for cotton picker parts that you can trust. Certi-Pik, USA is a leader in the industry because of our unparalleled expertise and high-quality products. Read on to find out exactly how the cotton growth cycle plays out.

Stages of growth

Cotton plants all have a time frame during which growth occurs. This begins with planting the seed in the soil. Under ideal conditions, the cotton seed germinates in under 10 days. Soon thereafter, two leaves appear on the seed, called cotyledons, which introduce the plant to the photosynthesis process.

In the following weeks, these young leaves become true leaves and continue feeding the plant. During weeks five to seven, small flower buds appear. Then, within a matter of days, the flower will appear and pollinate. The last stage exposes the cotton boll, which is the white, fluffy part of the plant. This continues to grow, and each plant may have up to 100 bolls containing 500,000 cotton fibers.

The bottom line is that after 140 days following planting, the cotton will split along the bolls and dry out. At this point, they’re ready for picking.

The right soil

It’s essential to grow cotton in soil conditions that are as close to ideal as possible. This can only be achieved through regular soil testing. The soil should be tested for its content of important nutrients and minerals like phosphorous, potassium, nitrogen and soil pH. A balance of these is necessary to spark the growth process. You may need to add fertilizer depending on the results of these tests.

It’s worth noting that weather and climate conditions have a significant impact on the chemical composition of soil. For example, significant amounts of nitrogen may be lost due to leaching and denitrification, which occurs in warmer, more humid climates. Also, different types of soil have varying moisture contents and may retain nutrients better than others.

When harvest time comes, you’re going to need cotton picker parts to haul in the crop. Certi-Pik, USA has been working with customers worldwide for more than 30 years. We have the best replacement parts in the industry and also sell a wide range of specialty items and sheet metal parts used in the cotton harvesting business.

Even the best machines will wear down at some point, which is why you need a parts supplier you can trust. We carry it all, including camtracks, drumheads, spindles and spindle nuts, picker and grid bars, slip clutches, lubrication hoses, stalk lifters, idler gears, CTX scrapping plates, CTX pressure doors and more. Give us a call today to learn more!