NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Wet weather continues to slow the harvest in Louisiana and Mississippi.
In recent weeks, farmers have watched the condition of their once-promising cotton crop deterioriate as the rains delayed a harvest that should, by now, be well on its way to completion.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that, as of Sunday, nearly half the cotton in each state was rated as being in poor or very poor condition and farmers made little to no progress in bringing in the remaining crop because of the soggy field conditions.
On average, at least three-quarters of the states' cotton is harvested by this time; but so far this year, Mississippi farmers have managed to bring in just 3 percent.
USDA rates 91 percent of Mississippi as having surplus soil moisture. That's also creating concerns for the hay harvest and for forage planting.