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2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey

Prepared by Joe Henggeler, Extension Agricultural Engineer
Commercial Agricultural Program


Average irrigated acreage of those surveyed in 2002: 948 acres.
Average acreage planned for irrigation in 2003: 985 acres X 3.4 % increase

I. Systems Used by Respondents

Furrow, rigid pipe 9 % Center pivot, fixed 43 %
Furrow, poly-pipe 32 % Center pivot, towable 11 %
Furrow, poly-pipe using surge 4 % Furrow, rigid using surge 0 %

II. Irrigation Costs

1. Fuel

Type Cost Sample Size
LP Gas $11.31/acre 12
Diesel $ 9.42/acre 21
Electric $10.86/acre 16

2. Maintenance and Repairs

Table 1. Maintenance and Repair Cost, Bootheel of Missouri, 2002
  Per Farmer Per Well Per Acre
Wells $1,398 $ 138 $ 0.35
Pumps $ 868 $ 139 $ 0.48
System
(average all types)
$2,412 $ 239 $ 0.37
Total $4,678 $ 516 $ 1.20
note: 85.1 acres/well site
11.6 wells per farmer

III. Irrigation Scheduling

The percentage of corn, cotton, and soybean acreage using either Arkansas Scheduler computer program or Woodruff charts was 9%. Overall scheduling produced 5 bu/ac more corn, 118 lbs more cotton, 8 bu/ac more full season soybeans, and 7 bu/ac more double-crop soybeans then irrigators who did not use either method. Results can be seen in Table 2..

Table 2. Yields of crops based on irrigation scheduling method employed, Sample sizes and average years of irrigating experience
Crop No scheduling method Scheduling Methodologies Difference between scheduling & not scheduling
    Ark. Scheduler computer program Woodruff irrigation charts  
Corn 158.7 bu/ac
81% of users
n = 30
186.7 bu/ac
8% of users
n = 3
146.0 bu/ac
11% of users
n = 4
+ 4.7 bu/ac
3 % increase
Cotton 862.5 lbs/ac
91% of users
n = 21
980.0 lbs/ac
9% of users
n = 2
----- + 117.5 lbs/ac
14 % increase
Soybean 43.8 bu/ac
91% of users
n = 22
52.0 bu/ac
9 % of users
n = 2
----- + 8.2 bu/ac
19 % increase
Double Crop soybean 42.7 bu/ac
96% of users
n = 22
50.0 bu/ac
4% of users
n = 1
----- + 7.3 bu/ac
17 % increase

IV. Crop Cultural Practices

Deep-ripped: 56 % (67%, 46% & 40 % for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Limed: 62 % (56%, 75% & 40% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Laser-leveled: 30 % (14%, 41% & 35% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Minimum till: 63 % (61%, 77% & 56% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)
Minimum till: 63 % (52%, 70%, 58% & 60% for corn, cotton, soybean and d.c. soybeans, respectively)
Use of drain furrows: 43% (59%, 27% & 66% for sand, silt & clay, respectively)

V. Iron Content of Wells

The level of iron in the irrigation wells does not seem to greatly effect the yield outcome. However, wells with watered classified by farmers as "high" may show some slight yield disadvantage (Table 3).

Table 3. Relative yields of crops based on iron content of the irrigation well.
Crop Flood Pivot
High Medium Low High Medium Low
Corn (bu/ac) .88
(5)
1.02
(7)
1.10
(3)
0.96
(6)
1.18
(6)
1.04
(4)
Cotton (bu/ac) 1.07
(2)
1.05
(6)
---- 0.85
(3)
1.06
(7)
0.82
(2)
Soybeans (bu/ac) 0.94
(5)
1.04
(6)
---- 0.62
(1)
1.04
(7)
1.10
(1)
DC Soybean (bu/ac) 1.18
(2)
1.00
(6)
0.82
(2)
1.07
(7)
0.99
(5)
0.83
(1)

V. Land Value Increase when Irrigation is Present

Irrigators were asked if irrigation on farm land increased the value of land. Compared to raw farm land the presence of irrigation increased land value by:

Table 4. 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, 2002.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
  Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
clay/gumbo 160.3
n = 3
179.4
n = 5
188.7
n = 3
172.3
n = 5
179.0
n = 4
165.5
n = 4
159.3
n = 3
180.0
n = 5
180.2
n = 6
148.5
n = 2
sand 179.0
n = 1
144.4
n = 10
158.3
n = 7
128.8
n = 4
152.9
n = 28
133.3
n = 3
173.8
n = 4
132.6
n = 7
161.0
n = 7
139.9
n = 7
silt 168.9
n = 8
157.4
n = 9
163.4
n = 9
162.1
n = 8
155.9
n = 8
169.0
n = 9
150.2
n = 9
177.0
n = 8
163.7
n = 7
162.3
n = 10
Other --- 136.0
n = 1
136.0
n = 1
--- --- 136.0
n = 1
136.0
n = 2
--- --- 136.0
n = 1
AVERAGE 167.6
n = 12
155.7
n = 25
164.00
n = 20
157.3
n = 17
159.3
n = 20
159.9
n = 17
156.5
n = 17
162.2
n = 20
156.5
n = 17
151.8
n = 20
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
+ 11.8 + 6.8 - .6 - 5.7 + 17.1

Table 5. Cotton yield in pounds of lint per acre for various soil types as affected by minimum tilling, deep ripping, liming, lasering, and use of surface drains, Southeast Missouri, 2002.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
  Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
clay/gumbo --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
sand 910.6
n = 10
846.7
n = 3
883.6
n = 10
936.7
n = 3
951.1
n = 9
771.5
n = 4
1035.0
n = 2
870.5
n = 11
757.2
n = 5
982.5
n = 8
silt 849.4
n = 5
1000.0
n = 1
888.0
n = 1
871.8
n = 5
998.8
n = 5
253.0
n = 1
774.3
n = 4
1075.0
n = 2
956.0
n = 1
858.2
n = 5
Other --- 794.8
n = 4
794.8
n = 4
--- 1050.0
n = 2
539.5
n = 2
850.0
n = 2
739.5
n = 2
600.0
n = 1
859.7
n = 3
AVERAGE 890.2
n = 15
839.9
n = 8
860.23
n = 15
896.1
n = 8
978.4
n = 16
631.1
n = 17
858.4
n = 8
880.3
n = 15
763.1
n = 7
920.6
n = 16
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
+ 50.3 + 35.9 + 347.2 - 21.9 - 157.5

Table 6. 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, 2002.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
  Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
clay/gumbo 45.2
n = 6
37.0
n = 2
43.3
n = 3
43.0
n = 5
44.0
n = 2
42.8
n = 6
44.3
n = 4
42.0
n = 4
42.3
n = 3
43.6
n = 5
sand 50.6
n = 5
44.5
n = 2
45.5
n = 4
53.3
n = 3
50.8
n = 4
46.3
n = 3
50.0
n = 1
48.7
n = 6
48.2
n = 6
53.0
n = 1
silt 49.7
n = 6
18.9
n = 2
49.6
n = 5
29.0
n = 3
50.0
n = 4
33.8
n = 4
40.5
n = 4
43.3
n = 4
43.3
n = 4
40.5
n = 4
Other --- 46.0
n = 1
46.0
n = 1
--- --- 46.0
n = 1
--- 46.0
n = 1
--- 46.0
n = 1
AVERAGE 48.4
n = 17
35.3
n = 7
46.6
n = 13
42.0
n = 11
49.1
n = 10
41.2
n = 11
43.2
n = 9
45.3
n = 15
45.3
n = 13
43.5
n = 11
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
+ 13.1 + 4.6 + 7.9 - 2.0 + 1.8

Table 7. 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, 2002.
  Minimum Till Deep Ripped Limed Lasered Drain Furrow
  Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
clay/gumbo 38.8
n = 5
41.0
n = 2
38.0
n = 1
39.7
n = 6
35.0
n = 2
41.2
n = 5
36.2
n = 5
47.5
n = 2
35.0
n = 2
41.2
n = 5
sand 37.0
n = 2
42.0
n = 3
35.7
n = 3
46.5
n = 2
46.5
n = 2
35.7
n = 3
53.0
n = 1
36.8
n = 4
36.8
n = 4
53.0
n = 1
silt 45.3
n = 4
46.8
n = 5
42.0
n = 4
49.4
n = 5
49.0
n = 6
40.3
n = 3
48.5
n = 4
44.2
n = 5
36.5
n = 2
48.9
n = 7
Other 54.0
n = 1
37.0
n = 1
45.5
n = 2
--- --- 45.5
n = 2
--- 45.5
n = 2
45.5
n = 2
---
AVERAGE 41.9
n = 12
43.5
n = 11
40.4
n = 10
44.2
n = 13
45.7
n = 10
40.4
n = 13
42.8
n = 10
42.6
n = 15
38.1
n = 10
46.3
n = 13
AVERAGE YIELD
CHANGE
- 1.6 - 3.8 + 5.3 + 0.2 - 8.1

TABLE 8.-- 2002 BOOTHEEL IRRIGATION RESULTS
  CORN COTTON FC SOY DC SOY MILO
Number Reported 37 23 24 23 2
Acres Reported 4136 3488 2887 2065 255
# of Irrigations, furrow 4.9 @ 2.4" 3.0 @ 2.0" 3.3 @ 3.9" 3.5 @ 1.9" ---
# of Irrigation, pivot 4.9 @ 2.4" 4.4 @ 1.0" 5.8 @ 1.1" 6.2 @ 1.4" ---
Irrigated Yield 160 bu 873 lbs 45 bu 43 bu 114 bu
Dryland Yield 104 bu 686 lbs 28 bu 30 bu 63 bu
Increase over Dryland 55.3 bu 203.0 lbs 15.6 bu 11.7 bu 51.0 bu

TABLE 9.--1987-2002 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 --- 43 --- 39 --- 733 --- 140 ---
2001 183 119 46 31 36 21 966 777 84 50
2002 160
($2.36)*
104
($2.36)*
45
($5.59)*
28
($2.36)*
43
($5.19)*
30
($2.36)*
873
($0.62)*
686
($2.36)*
114
($0.62)*
63
($2.36)*
Avg 158 109 43 30 40 27 834 656 103 74
* Break-even price; after D. Reinbott. 2003. Crop Budgets: Southeast Missouri. Un-numbered report. University of Missouri Outreach & Extension Service. Scott County.

TABLE 10A.--IRRIGATED FULL-SEASON SOYBEAN YIELD
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Showing # of irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 47.8
(6.8 @ 1.1")
n = 5
--- --- 51.5
(8.0 @ 5.6")
n = 2
48.86
n = 7
Silt 25.0
(3.0 @ 2.0")
n =
48.0
(4.0 @ 1.0")
n = 1
50.0
(--- @ ---)
n = 1
42.4
(4.2 @ 3.0")
n = 5
41.88
n = 8
Clay/Gumbo 40.0
(5.5 @ 1.0")
n = 2
--- --- 44.2
(2.2 @ 4.2")
n = 6
43.15
n = 8
Other --- --- --- 46.0
(--- @ ---)
n = 1
46.00
n = 1
Average 43.00
n = 8
48.00
n = 1
52.00
n = 1
44.73
n = 14
44.50
n = 24
furrow users with surge = 54.0 bu/ac (n = 1)
furrow users without surge = 44.4 bu/ac (n = 14)

TABLE 10B.-- YIELD INCREASE DUE TO IRRIGATION FOR FULL-SEASON SOYBEAN
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 17.2
n = 7
--- --- 29.0
n = 2
20.57
n = 9
Silt 17.0
n = 1
19.0
n = 1
--- 9.6
n = 5
11.97
n = 7
Clay/Gumbo 6.0
n = 2
--- --- 15.0
n = 6
12.75
n = 8
Other --- --- --- --- ---
Average 14.38
n = 10
19.00
n = 1
--- 15.08
n = 13
15.56
n = 24
furrow users with surge = 54.0 bu/ac (n = 1)
furrow users without surge = 44.4 bu/ac (n = 14)

TABLE 11A--IRRIGATED DOUBLE-CROP SOYBEANS YIELD
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey Showing # of irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 38.0
(9.3 @ 0.8")
n = 3
33.0
(6.0 @ 0.8")
n = 1
--- 53.0
(5.0 @ 1.0")
n = 1
40.00
n = 5
Silt 39.0
(6.0 @ 3.8")
n = 3
--- 43.7
(2.7 @ 2.5")
n = 3
51.5
(3.8 @ 2.0")
n = 4
45.41
n = 10
Clay/Gumbo 38.0
(3.0 @ 1.0")
n = 1
47.5
(3.0 @ 0.9")
n = 1
37.0
(3.0 @ ?)
n = 1
35.3
(4.0 @ 1.5")
n = 3
39.43
n = 7
Other 45.5
(6.5 @ 1.0")
n = 2
--- --- --- 45.50
n = 2
Average 40.13
n = 8
42.67
n = 3
42.00
n = 4
45.61
n = 8
42.70
n = 23
furrow users with surge = 43.0 bu/ac (n = 2)
furrow users without surge = 44.7 bu/ac (n = 10)

TABLE 11B.-- YIELD INCREASE DUE TO IRRIGATION FOR DOUBLE-CROP SOYBEAN
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 12.0
n = 3
5.0
n = 1
--- 18.0
n = 1
11.80
n = 5
Silt 10.07
n = 2
--- 17.0
n = 3
12.5
n = 4
13.44
n = 9
Clay/Gumbo 13.0
n = 1
5.5
n = 2
--- 7.0
n = 3
7.50
n = 6
Other 16.0
n = 2
--- --- --- 16.50
n = 2
Average 13.17
n = 8
5.33
n = 3
17.00
n = 35
11.13
n = 8
11.67
n = 22

TABLE 12A.--IRRIGATED CORN YIELD
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey Showing # of irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 152.65
(15.0@ 1.1")
n = 5
137.5
(6.5@ 1.6")
n = 2
--- 146.3
(5.8 @ 2.7")
n = 4
147.56
n = 11
Silt 181.9
(3.0@ 2.3")
n = 4
--- 176.8
(4.0 @ 3.3)
n = 4
148.4
(5.0 @ 1.9")
n = 9
162.82
n = 17
Clay/Gumbo 187.5
(6.8 @ 0.7")
n = 4
150.0
(4.0 @ 0.8")
n = 1
150.0
(4.0 @ 2.0)
n = 1
164.0
(6.0 @ ?)
n = 2
172.25
n = 8
Other --- --- --- 136.0
(3.0@ ?)
n = 1
136.00
n = 1
Average 172.20
n = 13
141.70
n = 3
171.40
n = 5
139.50
n = 16
159.60
n = 37
furrow users with surge =170.2 bu/ac (n = 5)
furrow users without surge =149.5 bu/ac (n = 11)

TABLE 12B.-- YIELD INCREASE DUE TO IRRIGATION FOR CORN
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 62.6
n = 5
80.0
n = 2
--- 27.5
n = 4
53.00
n = 11
Silt 83.3
n = 4
--- 82.3
n = 4
39.5
n = 9
59.88
n = 17
Clay/Gumbo 55.0
n = 4
25.0
n = 1
25.0
n = 1
--- 45.00
n = 6
Other --- --- --- --- ---
Average 67.58
n = 13
52.50
n = 3
68.00
n = 5
35.78
n = 13
55.29
n = 34

TABLE 13A.--IRRIGATED COTTON YIELD
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey Showing # of irrigations & Average Depth Applied
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 849.5
(4.6 @ 1.0")
n = 8
1000.0
(2.0 @ 0.8")
n = 1
300.0
(20 @ ?)
n = 1
1183.0
(3.0 @ ?)
n = 3
895.77
n = 13
Silt 701.5
(5.0 @ 1.5")
n = 2
978.0
(4.0 @ 0.5")
n = 2
--- 944.0
(3.5 @ 2.0")
n = 2
874.56
n = 6
Clay/Gumbo --- --- --- --- ---
Other 1000.0
(4.0 @ 0.8")
n = 1
--- --- 726.3
(3.0 @ ?)
n = 3
794.73
n = 4
Average 836.30
n = 11
985.30
n = 3
300.00
n = 1
952.10
n = 8
872.70
n = 23
furrow users with surge = 1000.0 bu/ac(n = 4)
furrow users without surge = 945.0 bu/ac(n = 11)

TABLE 13B.-- YIELD INCREASE DUE TO IRRIGATION FOR COTTON
2002 Bootheel Irrigation Survey
Soil Type Fixed Pivot Tow-able Pivot Rigid Pipe Poly-pipe Average
Sand 136.3
n = 8
300.0
n = 1
0.0
n = 1
466.7
n = 3
214.656
n = 13
Silt -507.0
n = 2
240.5
n = 2
--- 314.0
n = 2
15.83
n = 6
Clay/Gumbo 334.0
n = 1
--- --- 210.5
n = 2
251.67
n = 3
Other 250.0
n = 1
--- --- 350.0
n = 3
325.0
n = 4
Average 77.44
n = 11
260.30
n = 3
--- 396.30
n = 8
202.90
n = 23

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