Schirmer Farms (Batesville) Operations Manager Brandon Schirmer, sprays defoliant on one of the fields at his father's multi-crop 1,014-acre farm, in Batesville, TX, on August 12, 2020.
Mr. Schirmer has already contacted the Texas Department of Agriculture to let them know that he will be spraying a defoliant to promote the cotton plant's leaves to drop off and bolls to open in preparation for harvest approximately 14-days later. The plant remains alive and will continue to produce cotton unless the field needs to be replanted for another crop to improve soil health or for economic opportunity. The sprayer vehicle has location and system data that is accessed by a smart-device app. The app allows him to show authorities detailed records of what, where, and how much was sprayed. He uses this historical spray data to improve future harvests. The liquid concentrates are carefully measured and safely poured into the sprayer's mixing system. Once in the cotton fields, the sprayer with its 90-foot-wide spray arms will deliver defoliant to the plants just below the nozzles.
Schirmer Farms operates in consultation with an agronomist for science-based recommendations for all soil, crop, and harvest management.
Brandon Schirmer is the sixth generation of the Schirmer farming family.
USDA Photo by Lance Cheung. Original public domain image from Flickr