The 2001 growing season literally is one for the record books in Georgia:

  • The highest corn yield on record.

  • The second highest peanut yield on record.

  • The third highest tobacco yield on record.

  • The third highest soybean yield on record.

  • The fourth highest cotton yield on record.

Good rainfall amounts during the critical summer months and dry weather during harvest resulted in some of the best crop yields seen in Georgia in the past five years, according to the state's agricultural statistics service.

Weather conditions during October and November were extremely dry, with most areas of the state receiving little or no rainfall. Temperatures were generally above normal to near normal as the dry weather provided excellent harvesting conditions. The dry weather, however, was not good for pastures and planting small grains.

Georgia's cotton production for 2001 is expected to total 2.20 million bales or 90,000 bales above the October forecast and 537,000 bales above 2001 production. If this production is realized, it will be the fourth highest on record, topped only by the years 1911, 1914 and 1913, respectively. Acreage for harvest, at 1,490,000 acres, remains unchanged from earlier estimates. The yield calculates to 710 pounds per harvested acre. By the end of October, 61 percent of the crop had been harvested.

U.S. upland cotton harvested acreage, at 13.9 million acres, is unchanged from the earlier estimates but 8 percent above last year.

In the Southeastern states, cotton picking was aided throughout October by favorable dry weather in most areas. However, harvest remained behind the five-year average in Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina due to a slow developing crop. Harvest progressed ahead of normal in both North Carolina and Virginia, despite a slow start in North Carolina.

Upland cotton harvest lagged behind the five-year average in all of the Delta States during the second half of October. A slow developing crop and rain delays during the middle of October hindered harvest, especially compared to last year's rapid pace. Despite the slower than normal harvest progress, all states had picked at least 86 percent of their acreage by Nov. 4.

Peanut production for Georgia is forecast at 1.60 billion pounds, 12 percent more than earlier forecasts and 20 percent more than in 2000. Yield per harvested acre is forecast at 3,350 pounds or 350 pounds more than last month and 650 pounds more than the 2000 yield.

If this yield is realized, it will be the second highest on record, topped only by 1984's yield of 3,375 pounds per acre. Harvesting conditions during October were good. By the end of October, virtually all of the crop had been dug and combined. Late August and early September rains helped the crop more than anticipated.

Peanut production throughout the United States is forecast at 4.16 billion pounds, up 7 percent from earlier estimates and 27 percent above last year's crop. Area for harvest is expected to total 1.39 million acres, unchanged from October but up 4 percent from 2000. Yields are expected to average 2,990 pounds per acre, 207 pounds above last month and up 546 pounds from 2000. This yield, if realized, will surpass the record high of 2,883 pounds per acre set in 1984.

Georgia's corn yield is expected to average 123 bushels per harvested acre, three bushels per acre less than earlier forecasts but 16 bushels per acre more than the 2000 crop. If this yield is realized, it will break last year's state record yield of 107 bushels per acre. Corn production is expected to total 27.1 million bushels from 220,000 harvested acres. This production forecast is 16 percent below 2000.

U.S. corn production is forecast at 9.55 billion bushels, up 1 percent from last month but down 4 percent from 2000. Based on conditions as of Nov. 1, yields are expected to average 138 bushels per acre, up 1.7 bushels from October. If realized, this would be the fourth largest production and second highest yield on record.

Georgia's soybean production is expected to total 4.48 million bushels, 8 percent above last month and 33 percent above 2000. Acreage expected for harvest at 160,000 acres, 14 percent above the 140,000 harvested in 2000. Yields are expected to average 28 bushels per acre, up 2 bushels from last month and up 4 bushels from last year. If this yield is realized, it will be the third highest on record. Harvesting was off to a fast start. As of the first part of November, 52 percent of the crop had been harvested compared with 37 percent for the five year average.

U.S. soybean production is forecast at a record high 2.92 billion bushels, up 1 percent from earlier estimates and 6 percent above 2000. Based on November conditions, yields are expected to average 39.4 bushels per acre or 1.3 bushels above 2000. Acreage for harvest is estimated at a record high 74.1 million acres, unchanged from last month but up 2 percent from 2000.The tobacco yield in Georgia is forecast at 2,400 pounds per acre. This yield would be 180 pounds per acre more than in 2000. If this yield is realized, it will be the third highest on record. Harvested acreage is expected to total 27,000 acres, the same as last month and 4,000 acres less than in 2000. Production is forecast at 64.8 million pounds, 6 percent less than in 2000.