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Has anyone grown cotton?

New York, United States Us

Has anyone ever grown cotton successfully? I thought this might be a fun project with the kids. Pitfalls? Rewards?




Rewards - you will be able to knit(?) a new shirt for yourself!

17 May, 2018


Lol! That's just what I always wanted! Certainly beats those flannel shirts I get every Christmas!

17 May, 2018


Coming from a cotton growing State, I can tell you that the plants are easy enough to grow, with sun and a reasonable amount of heat. They like the same conditions as squash and melons, but most of the commercial varieties are damaged by rain once the bolls split open. You might want to check for local, or near local heirloom varieties. Some such varieties are colored, which will be interesting for the kids.

18 May, 2018


Thanks Tug. What if I used those little 'hoods' as they do with the pears in China? Would that prevent spoilage? Colored? humm sounds more interesting now. I hope the season here is long enough. What state do you come from?

18 May, 2018


Arizona, Bathgate. :)
Most of the cotton grown here is long staple Egyptian cotton, and extra soft Pima cotton. Unfortunately, these are the most dependent on long, hot, dry summers. The ones that are better adapted to cooler, wetter climates tend to be a little coarser, with shorter fibers, but not usually badly so.
It's surprising how many different colors heirloom cottons come in. There are a few farmers here that specialize in organically grown colored cotton varieties.
Cotton bolls in "hoodies" sounds like a lot of work: if things go well, a "bush" can have dozens of bolls.

19 May, 2018


It sounds like work, but it's a 'one-off' project to see the phases of development. Think of those pear trees in China. Each pear is hand pollinated because they don't have bees. Then a 'baggie' is placed over each blossom and the cost of pears quadruples. That's work!

21 May, 2018


I don't see why it wouldn't work, as long as the hoods are waxed paper, rather than plastic. Best of luck, Bathgate!

22 May, 2018

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