West Texas Farmers and Ranchers Reaping Benefits From Recent Rains

By Wyatt Goolsby
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND COUNTY - It's something local farmers and ranchers in West Texas just aren't used to seeing: Rain, and lots of it. Many say it's a blessing, but some say two straight weeks without a break brings both good and bad.

For the most part, it's the kind of scene many West Texas farmers and ranchers are happy to see: Fields of green and plenty of water. Consistent rains the last two weeks are helping in Midland County, especially with cotton crops.

"If we have adequate rainfall and we've had plenty with the underground moisture and the recent rains, we are in good shape," Andy Schumann, a Midland County farmer and rancher, told NewsWest 9.

Schumann said there's plenty of reason to be optimistic on his cotton crops. However, he is taking the good with the bad. Lots of rain and a lack of steady breaks takes its toll on the hay fields, which are now covered in weeds.

"The hay sets it back. We are actually losing a cutting, but we are actually gaining it in the cotton end of it," Schumann added.

"Water is one of our essential nutrients. It's all about sustainability, and [whether the rain can] keep coming," Dr. Zan Matthies, with Midland County's Extension Office, explained.

Matthies said in the short term, the recent rain is good. Long term, though, it all depends on the amount of rain. There's always the potential West Texas could get a little too much and flood cotton crops. For now, even with some setbacks like Schumann's hay field, there's no doubt the good far outweighs the bad.