Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Agricultural Extension

Major Professor

Robert S. Dotson

Committee Members

Larry Parks, Luther Keller, C. E. Carter Jr., D. M. Gossett


Eighty-one randomly selected cotton producers in Lauderdale County were interviewed in 1966 for the purposes of: (1) characterizing those in different cotton yield groups; (2) determining which practices were being used by those in different yield groups, and (3) identifying some of the factors influencing the farmers to use or not to use the12 practices studied. Cotton producers were divided into yield categories based on pounds of lint cotton produced per acre in 1965) and main comparisons were made between highest and lowest groups.

Findings disclosed that cotton producers in the county in 1965 had the following characteristics: (1) had an average farm size of 78 acres, and (4) had an average of 46 acres of cropland. Most cotton producers were full-time farmers with cotton as their major source of income.

When highest and lowest yield groups were compared it was noted that the latter had: (1) a higher average educational level (9.5 vs. 8.I4. grades); (2) a larger average sizeof farm (79 vs. 67 acres); (3) more average acres of cropland (61 vs. 39 acres); (4) a larger cotton allotment (20.1vs. 9.7 acres); (5) planted a larger acreage of cotton(27.0 vs. 11.4.), and (6) harvested more average acres of cotton mechanically (15.1 vs. 6.3 acres).

With regard to adoption of 12 recommended cotton production practices studied, farmers in the highest yield group had the highest total average practice diffusion rating. There also appeared to be a positive relation between yield and management levels since higher production groups tended to have higher total average practice diffusion ratings than lower yield groups.

Some other factors influencing cotton practice adoption included: (1) the net returns received per acre; (2)the adequacy of machinery and equipment; (3) the amount of technical knowledge of the operator; (4) the relative cost of the practices and benefits received, and (5) the seriousness of land preparation, planting and harvesting problems peculiar to cotton.

With regard to sources of cotton production and marketing advice reported by crop producers, they included neighbors or friends, dealers or salesmen, and Extensionworkers in that order. Additional sources of information most frequently mentioned were farm magazines, television,radio and weekly newspapers.

Suggestions were made for use of the findings.

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