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2000 Bootheel Irrigation Survey

Prepared by Joe Henggeler, Extension Agricultural Engineer
Commercial Agricultural Program


Average irrigated acreage of those surveyed in 2000: 873 acres
Average acreage planned for irrigation in 2001: 925 acres

I. Systems Used

Furrow, rigid pipe
Furrow, poly-pipe
Furrow, poly-pipe using surge

4%
30%
30%

Center pivot, fixed
Center pivot, towable
Basin

40%
10%
5%


II. Irrigation Costs

1) Fuel:

LP Gas
Diesel
Electric

$13.07/acre
$10.78/acre
$ 9.57/acre

(increase of 13.5%)
(decrease of 19.5%)
(decrease of 19.3%)


2) Maintenance and Repairs:

Table 1. Maintenance and Repair Cost, Bootheel of Missouri, 2000
  Per Farmer Per Well Per Acre
Wells $1,627 $131.01 $1.45
Pumps $1,293 $90.96 $1.01
System
(average all types)
$2,454 --- $2.96
Total $5,374 --- $5.41
Note: 90.3 acres/well site, 11.0 wells per farmer

III. Irrigation Scheduling

The percentage of corn, cotton, and soybean acreage using either Arkansas Scheduler computer program or Woodruff charts was 18%. Overall scheduling produced 7 bu/ac more corn and 9 bu/ac more double crop soybeans, but 47 lbs/ac less cotton lint and 4 bu/ac less full season soybeans. The full-season soybean crop was unusual this year, and yields were less then what many people had anticipated prior to combining the fields. It may have been due to the high temperatures in late summer. In this scenario, scheduling did not help. Results can be seen in Table 2.

Table 2. Yields of Crops Based on Irrigation Scheduling Method Employed
  Scheduling Methodologies Difference between scheduling & not scheduling
Crop No scheduling method Ark. Scheduler computer program Woodruff irrigation charts
Corn 169.8 bu/ac
73% of acreage
n = 58
159.0 bu/ac
7% of acreage
n = 5
185.6 bu/ac
20% of acreage
n = 10
+6.9 bu/ac
Cotton 736.8 lbs/ac
91% of acreage
n = 29
750.0 lbs/ac
2% of acreage
n = 1
630.0 lbs/ac
7% of acreage
n = 1
-46.8 lbs/ac
Soybean 43.1 bu/ac
86% of acreage
n = 48
38.8 bu/ac
6% of acreage
n = 4
40.0 bu/ac
8% of acreage
n = 3
-3.8 bu/ac
Double Crop Soybean 37.6 bu/ac
88% of acreage
n = 19
47.5 bu/ac
8% of acreage
n = 2
45.0 bu/ac
3% of acreage
n = 1
+9.1 bu/ac

IV. Irrigation Management

Growers were asked if they had changed their management style in the last recent years. Specifically, were they (1) starting to irrigate earlier in the season, (2) applying more water during the season, and (3) watering later into the season. The response to the question on starting to water earlier is seen in Figure 1, and is reported as relative yields (the average crop yield from the survey = 1.0, values above 1.0 were proportionally higher then average, and thus less then 1.0 were less then average). Except in double crop soybeans, those respondents who stated that they were beginning to water earlier did the best, and those that were starting water did the worst.

Fig. 1. Relative corn, cotton, soybean, and double-crop soybean yields based on when the first irrigation of the season was applied. The proportion of corn growers watering either earlier, the same, or later was 56%, 36%, 8%, respectively. For cotton: 59%, 39%, and 3%. For soybean: 60%, 29%, and 12%. For double-crop soybean: 39%, 48%, and 13%.

V. Iron in Irrigation Water

Growers reported that most of their wells had water with iron content, but most thought that yields were not compromised. Results showed that those respondents who reported that few or non of their wells had iron in them, had approximately % higher yields on corn, soybeans, and double-crop soybeans. It most be noted that the sample from which the "few or none of the wells" was small.

Do your wells have high iron content?

  None 9%
  About half 9%
  Most of them 82%

Are your yields being effected?

  Helps yield 4%
  No effect 83%
  Hurts yield 14%

Is iron in your wells? Corn Soybean D.C. Soybean
None or few 189 (n = 4) 46 (n = 5) 44 (n = 2)
Half or most wells 170 (n = 69) 42 (n = 48) 38 (n = 20)

VI. Crop Cultural Practices

Deep-ripped: 45% (88%, 39% & 0% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Limed: 50% (48%, 55% & 33% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Laser-leveled: 55% (37%, 60% & 71% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Minimum till: 56% (53%, 61%, 51% & 90% for corn, cotton, soybean and d.c. soybeans, respectively)
Use of drain furrows: 55% (37%, 60% & 71% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)

Table A. Corn yield in bushels per acre for various soil types as affected by minimum tilling, deep ripping, liming, lasering, and use of surface drains, Southeast Missouri, 2000.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
Clay/Gumbo 168.1
n = 8
174.6
n = 5
182.0
n = 4
165.6
n = 9
168.6
n = 7
173.0
n = 6
165.6
n = 8
178.6
n = 5
171.3
n = 6
170.0
n = 7
Sand 165.0
n = 10
172.1
n = 15
170.1
n = 18
172.9
n = 7
172.4
n = 18
167.7
n = 7
175.1
n = 7
169.2
n = 18
178.5
n = 11
164.9
n = 14
Silt 173.4
n = 20
168.4
n = 11
168.2
n = 18
176.4
n = 13
171.4
n = 18
171.8
n = 13
176.5
n = 20
162.8
n = 11
168.2
n = 13
174.1
n = 18
Other 172.0
n = 3
177.0
n = 1
172.0
n = 3
173.3
n = 1
173.3
n = 4
--- 165.7
n = 3
196.0
n = 1
175.5
n = 2
171.0
n = 2
AVERAGE 170.2
n = 41
171.4
n = 32
170.54
n = 43
172.24
n = 30
171.53
n = 47
170.70
n = 26
173.09
n = 38
169.30
n = 35
168.1
n = 8
168.1
n = 8
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
-1.16 -1.70 0.82 3.80 2.67

Table B. Cotton yield in pounds of lints per acre for various soil types as affected by minimum tilling, deep ripping, liming, lasering, and use of surface drains, Southeast Missouri, 2000.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
Clay/Gumbo 788.5
n = 4
815.0
n = 2
1008.0
n = 1
735.7
n = 5
902.0
n = 1
771.0
n = 5
675.0
n = 1
846.7
n = 5
819.0
n = 2
788.5
n = 4
Sand 712.8
n = 10
782.0
n = 2
673.8
n = 8
735.7
n = 5
724.6
n = 7
726.8
n = 5
776.5
n = 6
664.0
n = 6
667.3
n = 3
747.1
n = 9
Silt 768.8
n = 9
606.0
n = 4
676.7
n = 11
949.5
n = 2
661.7
n = 6
767.6
n = 7
750.6
n = 8
667.6
n = 5
678.2
n = 6
753.2
n = 7
Other --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
AVERAGE 747.88
n = 23
702.25
n = 8
692.11
n = 20
820.86
n = 11
710.31
n = 14
756.60
n = 17
755.92
n = 15
722.22
n = 16
700.83
n = 11
757.53
n = 20
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
45.63 -128.76 -46.29 33.70 -56.69

Table C. Soybean yield in bushels per acre for various soil types as affected by minimum tilling, deep ripping, liming, lasering, and use of surface drains, Southeast Missouri, 2000.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
Clay/Gumbo 38.9
n = 11
40.1
n = 7
43.7
n = 6
37.3
n = 12
43.1
n = 9
35.7
n = 9
42.5
n = 8
36.9
n = 10
38.2
n = 12
41.81
n = 6
Sand 38.1
n = 7
44.0
n = 3
38.0
n = 3
40.2
n = 7
37.7
n = 4
40.3
n = 6
43.6
n = 6
34.3
n = 4
41.7
n = 3
38.3
n = 7
Silt 46.2
n = 10
48.3
n = 11
47.91
n = 9
46.7
n = 12
51.2
n = 11
43.6
n = 10
49.5
n = 14
43.3
n = 7
45.3
n = 12
50.4
n = 9
Other 44.0
n = 5
37.0
n = 1
37.0
n = 2
47.5
n = 4
44.0
n = 5
37.0
n = 1
44.0
n = 4
37.0
n = 2
44.0
n = 3
37.0
n = 3
AVERAGE 41.72
n = 33
44.59
n = 22
44.07
n = 20
42.27
n = 35
45.58
n = 29
39.85
n = 26
45.96
n = 32
38.40
n = 23
41.97
n = 30
43.34
n = 25
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
-2.87 1.80 5.73 7.55 -1.37

Table D. Double-crop soybean yield in bushels per acre for various soil types as affected by minimum tilling, deep ripping, liming, lasering, and use of surface drains, Southeast Missouri, 2000.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
Clay/Gumbo 42.3
n = 4
44.0
n = 2
--- 42.8
n = 6
--- 42.8
n = 6
--- 42.8
n = 6
42.3
n = 4
44.0
n = 2
Sand 36.80
n = 9
--- 37.0
n = 6
36.3
n = 3
39.1
n = 7
28.5
n = 2
34.5
n = 2
37.4
n = 7
39.3
n = 6
31.7
n = 3
Silt 42.74
n =
30.0
n =
40.01
n =
40.0
n =
40.0
n =
--- 45.0
n = 1
38.3
n = 3
36.0
n = 2
44.0
n = 2
Other 35.7
n = 3
--- 35.0
n = 1
36.0
n = 2
35.01
n = 1
36.0
n = 2
35.0
n = 1
36.0
n = 2
36.0
n = 2
35.0
n = 1
AVERAGE 38.72
n = 19
39.33
n = 3
37.70
n = 10
39.81
n = 12
39.06
n = 12
38.58
n = 10
37.25
n = 4
39.19
n = 18
39.21
n = 14
38.26
n = 8
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
-0.62 -2.11 0.48 -1.94 0.95

Table 2.-- 2000 Bootheel Irrigation Results
  CORN COTTON SOY DC SOY MILO
Number Reported 73 31 55 22 1
Acres Reported 6833 680 5739 2357 100
# of Irrigations, furrow          
# of Irrigations, pivot          
Irrigated Yield 171 bu 733 lbs 43 bu 39 bu ---
Dryland Yield --- --- --- --- ---
Increase over Dryland --- --- --- --- ---

Table 3.-- 1987-2000 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Yields for Irrigated vs Dryland Crops and their Breakeven Costs
Year Irrig. Corn
(bu)
Non-Irrig. Corn
(bu)
Irrig. Soybeans
(bu)
Non-Irrig. Soybeans
(bu)
Irrig. DC Soybeans
(bu)
Non-Irrig. DC Soybeans
(bu)
Irrig. Cotton
(lbs)
Non-Irrig. Cotton
(lbs)
Irrig. Milo
(bu)
Non-Irrig. Milo
(bu)
1987 149 121 44 32 33 19 -- -- 110 101
1988 148 88 39 32 36 27 877 718 108 91
1989 152 117 37 27 29 23 807 605 92 77
1990 146 86 44 29 38 31 768 528 82 32
1991 143 84 42 29 43 30 917 678 105 69
1992 189 135 48 37 44 32 1029 990 121 108
1993 137 95 44 31 41 30 722 546 113 75
1994 162 123 47 38 43 37 933 779 101 93
1995 156 124 43 29 42 31 637 422 90 66
1996 170 124 43 32 42 25 905 719 98 63
1997 155 103 41 28 42 31 865 723 110 70
1998 140 95 37 22 40 27 692 542 82 ---
1999 163 121 49 21 43 17 787 471 --- ---
2000 171
($2.48)
135**
($2.40)
43
($6.77)
33**
($7.07)
39
($7.46)
27**
($8.66)
733
($0.67)
--- 140
($2.14)
---
Avg 156 111 43 30 40 28 828 642 101 77
* Break-even price; after D. Reinbott. 2000. Crop Budgets: Southeast Missouri. Un-numbered report. University of Missouri Outreach & Extension Service. Scott County.
** Estimates of dryland yield from survey taken at a Cape Girardeau educational meeting.

Table 5.-- Irrigated Full-Season Soybeans Yield
2000 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Showing # of Irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Towable Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Poly-pipe with surge Average
Sand 35.5
(10.0@0.9")
n = 2
26.0
(10.0@0.9")
n = 1
--- 41.3
(10.0@0.9")
n = 5
46.5
(2.0@7.0")
n = 2
44.00
n = 3
Silt 42.5
(13.0@1.0")
n = 4
45.0
(12.0@0.7")
n = 1
47.3
(4.0@6.0")
n = 3
49.1
(10.0@0.9")
n = 13
--- 50.89
n = 9
Clay/Gumbo 35.1
(10.0@0.9")
n = 7
33.05
(10.0@0.9")
n = 2
--- 45.5
(10.0@0.9")
n = 6
41.3
(4.3@3.7")
n = 3
49.00
n = 6
Other --- 00.0
(10.0@0.9")
n = 2
  43.5
(10.0@0.9")
n = 2
37.0
(10.0@0.9")
n = 1
 
Average 37.46
n = 13
34.25
n = 4
47.33
n = 3
46.30
n = 26
42.33
n = 6
49.11
n = 18
furrow users with surge = 42.3 bu/ac (n=6)
furrow users without surge = 46.6 bu/ac (n=10)

Table 7.-- Irrigated Double-Crop Soybeans Yield
2000 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Showing # of Irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Towable Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Poly-pipe with surge Average
Sand 39.8
(14.5@0.6")
n = 6
30.7
(14.5@0.6")
n = 3
--- --- --- 41.50
n = 4
Silt --- 36.0
(7.3@0.9")
n = 2
43.0
(10.0@0.9")
n = 1
--- 45.0
(14.5@0.6")
n = 1
43.55
n = 9
Clay/Gumbo 42.3
(6.5@1.0")
n = 4
--- 44.0
(14.5@0.6")
n = 2
--- --- 43.00
n = 2
Other 45.7
(6.5@1.0")
n = 3
      --- 38.86
n = 22
Average 39.62
n = 13
32.80
n = 5
43.67
n = 3
45.00
n = 1
  42.80
n = 15
furrow users with surge = 47.8 bu/ac (n = 4)
furrow users without surge = 41.0 bu/ac (n = 11)

Table 9.-- Irrigated Corn Yield
2000 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Showing # of Irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Towable Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Poly-pipe with surge Average
Sand 172.6
(8.0@0.8")
n = 14
143.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 1
--- 166.7
(8.0@0.8")
n = 7
181.7
(8.0@0.8")
n = 3
132.00
n = 2
Silt 163.6
(8.5@0.7")
n = 5
167.5
(9.5@4.1")
n = 2
176.2
(3.0@?)
n = 5
172.2
(8.0@0.8")
n = 14
175.0
(5.6@1.8")
n = 5
170.93
n =14
Clay/Gumbo 172.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 3
175.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 1
185.0
(6.0@?)
n = 2
148.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 4
190.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 2
120.00
n = 1
Other 160.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 2
196.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 1
--- 177.0
(8.0@0.8")
n = 1
--- 171.26
n = 73
Average 169.88
n = 24
169.80
n = 5
178.71
n = 7
167.19
n = 26
180.00
n = 10
163.36
n = 17

Table 11.-- Irrigated Cotton Yield
2000 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Showing # of Irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Towable Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Poly-pipe with surge Average
Sand 605.3
(4.0@6.0")
n = 3
--- --- 708.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 6
874.3
(6.0@2.0")
n = 3
833.33
n = 3
Silt 728.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 3
--- --- 676.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 7
809.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 3
650.00
n = 1
Clay/Gumbo 819.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 4
--- --- 902.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 1
675.0
(4.0@6.0")
n = 1
---
Average 704.75
n = 10
--- --- 705.69
n = 14
817.86
n = 14
787.48
n = 4

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