The Wiregrass Cotton Expo, one of the Deep South’s most comprehensive annual cotton meetings, is slated for Feb. 15 at the National Peanut Festival Fairgrounds in Dothan, Ala.

The meeting, in its 14th year, serves cotton producers in Alabama, Georgia and Florida.

William Birdsong, a cotton agronomist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, says that at its core the Expo is an opportunity for growers to think strategically about all facets of their cotton program, from variety selection and planting to getting a handle on pest and weed problems.

“This is the time of year when producers are working out their plans for the upcoming season, and they’ve got to have the best information available to make informed decisions,” Birdsong says.  

“The annual Wiregrass Expo was designed for and functions with just that concern in mind,” he says.

At the top of the list is variety selection.

“Producers want to stay on the cutting edge of variety selection, because crop genetics are so essential to their success.”

As with previous expos, seed company representatives will be on hand to answer questions and to book purchases for the 2013 season, Birdsong says.

To complement these efforts, Extension economist Max Runge will discuss 2013 cropping decision-making, an especially important consideration for Wiregrass growers.

A major focus of Runge’s remarks will be on how these decisions should be made in light of the near record yields in 2012, which, ironically, followed record drought in 2011.

The growing problem associated with resistant pigweed, an especially serious problem in the Wiregrass region, is also another issue that will be addressed at this year’s expo.